Fall in Love with the Real Thing



Fall in Love with the Real Thing

It’s never easy to let go. Or is it? Most of us would agree that there are few things harder than letting go of what we love. And yet, sometimes that’s exactly what we have to do. Sometimes we love things that we can’t have. Sometimes we want things that are not good for us. And sometimes we love what Allah does not love. To let go of these things is hard. Giving up something the heart adores is one of the hardest battles we ever have to fight.

But what if it didn’t have to be such a battle? What if it didn’t have to be so hard? Could there ever be an easy way to let go of an attachment? Yes. There is.

Find something better.

They say you don’t get over someone until you find someone or something better. As humans, we don’t deal well with emptiness. Any empty space must be filled. Immediately. The pain of emptiness is too strong. It compels the victim to fill that place. A single moment with an empty spot causes excruciating pain. That’s why we run from distraction to distraction, and from attachment to attachment.

In the quest to free the heart, we speak a lot about breaking our false dependencies. But then there’s always the question of ‘how?’ Once a false attachment has been developed, how do we break free? Often it feels too hard. We get addicted to things, and can’t seem to let them go. Even when they hurt us. Even when they damage our lives and our bond with God. Even when they are so unhealthy for us. We just can’t let them go. We are too dependent on them. We love them too much and in the wrong way. They fill something inside of us that we think we need…that we think we can’t live without. And so, even when we struggle to give them up, we often abandon the struggle because it’s too hard.

Why does that happen? Why do we have so much trouble sacrificing what we love for what God loves? Why can’t we just let go of things? I think we struggle so much with letting go of what we love, because we haven’t found something we love more to replace it.

When a child falls in love with a toy car, he becomes consumed with that love. But what if he can’t have the car? What if he has to walk by the store every day, and see the toy he can’t have? Every time he walks by, he would feel pain. And he may even struggle not to steal it. Yet, what if the child looks past the store window and sees a Real car? What if he sees the Real Ferrari? Would he still struggle with his desire for the toy? Would he still have to fight the urge to steal it? Or would he be able to walk right past the toy—the disparity in greatness annihilating the struggle?

We want love. We want money. We want status. We want this life. And like that child, we too become consumed with these loves. So when we can’t have those things, we are that child in a store, struggling not to steal them. We are struggling not to commit haram for the sake of what we love. We are struggling to let go of the haram relationships, business dealings, actions, dress. We are struggling to let go of the love of this life. We are the stumbling servant struggling to let go of the toy…because it’s all we see.

This whole life and everything in it is like that toy car. We can’t let go of it because we haven’t found something greater. We don’t see the Real thing. The Real version. The Real model.

Allah (swt) says,


“What is the life of this world but amusement and play? But verily the Home in the Hereafter,- that is life indeed, if they but knew.” (29:64)

When describing this life, Allah uses the Arabic word for ‘life’: الْحَيَاةُ. But, when describing the next life, Allah here uses the highly exaggerated term for life, الْحَيَوَانُ. The next life is the Real life. The Realer life. The Real version. And then Allah ends the ayah by saying “If they but knew”. If we could see the Real thing, we could get over our deep love for the lesser, fake model.

In another ayah, God says:



“But you prefer the worldly life, while the Hereafter is better and more enduring.” (87:16-17)

The Real version is better in quality (خَيْرٌ) and better in quantity (أَبْقَىٰ). No matter how great what we love in this life is, it will always have some deficiency, in both quality (imperfections) and quantity (temporary).

This is not to say that we cannot have or even love things of this life. As believers we are told to ask for good in this life and the next. But it is like the toy car and the real car. While we could have or even enjoy the toy car, we realize the difference. We understand fully that there is a lesser model (dunya: coming from the root word ‘daniya’, meaning ‘lower’) and there is the Real model (hereafter).

But how does that realization help us in this life? It helps because it makes the ‘struggle’ to follow the halal, and refrain from the haram easier. The more we can see the Real thing, the easier it becomes to give up the ‘unreal’—when necessary. That does not mean we have to give up the ‘unreal’ completely, or all the time. Rather it makes our relationship with the lesser model (dunya) one in which if and when we are asked to give something up for the sake of what is Real, it is no longer difficult. If we are asked to refrain from a prohibition that we want, it becomes easier. If we are asked to be firm in a commandment that we don’t want, it becomes easier. We become the matured child who likes to have the toy, but if ever asked to choose between the toy and the Real thing, see a ‘no-brainer’. For example, many of the Prophet’s (pbuh) companions had wealth. But when the time came, they could easily give half or all of it for Allah’s sake.

This focus also transforms what we petition for help or approval. If we’re in desperate need of something, we will appeal to the servant—only when we don’t see or know the King. But if we’re on our way to meet that King and we run into His servant, we may greet the servant, be kind to the servant, even love the servant. But we will not waste time trying to impress the servant, when there is a King to impress. We will never waste effort appealing to the servant for our need, while the King is the One in control. Even if the King had given some authority to the servant, we’d know very well that the power to give and take rests ultimately with the King—and the King alone. This knowledge comes only from knowing and seeing the King.  And this knowledge completely transforms how we interact with the servant.

Seeing the Real thing transforms the way we love. Ibn Taymiyyah (RA) discussed this concept when he said: “If your heart is enslaved by someone who is forbidden for him: One of the main causes for this miserable situation is turning away from Allah, for once the heart has tasted worship of Allah and sincerity towards Him, nothing will be sweeter to it than that, nothing will be more delightful or more precious. No one leaves his beloved except for another one he loves more, or for fear of something else. The heart will give up corrupt love in favor of true love, or for fear of harm.”

One of our greatest problems as an ummah is as the Prophet (pbuh) told us in a hadith: wahn (love of dunya and hatred of death). We’ve fallen in love with dunya. And anytime you are in love, it becomes next to impossible to get over that love or separate from it—until you are able to fall in love with something greater. It is next to impossible to dislodge this destructive love of dunya from our hearts, until we find something greater to replace it. Having found a greater love, it becomes easy to get over another one. When the love of God, His messenger (pbuh) and the Home with Him is really seen, it overpowers and dominates any other love in the heart. The more that love is seen, the more dominate it becomes. And thereby the easier it will be to really actualize the statement of Ibraheem (AS):


“Say, ‘Indeed, my prayer, my service of sacrifice, my living and my dying are for Allah, Lord of the worlds.'” (6:162)


So in letting go, the answer lies in love. Fall in love. Fall in love with something greater. Fall in love with the Real thing. See the Mansion.

Only then, will we stop playing in the dollhouse.



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  • Hafsa

    beautifully put , as always , Mash’Allah. May Allah Swt bless you immensely for the kindness you show towards his creation and Ummah. Ameen

  • Yahia105422

    mashallah , it’s very nicce ….

  • Sidra Mahmood

    You wrote the dilemma of my life (and I’m sure of others’ too) so beautifully. JazakAllah khayr. May Allah swt increase you in wisdom and eloquence. Ameen.

  • Loved it sister. Jazakallah khair.

  • Shaieas

    Mash Allah ما شاء الله العظيم —جزاك الله خير

  • Shireen_Hanief

    Asslamu alaikum.. i like the way u explain the concept of dunya.. subhanallah.. love u sis yasmin for the sake of allah

  • abd al Ghani

    as salam alaykoum

    masha ALLAH sister, you have the talent to make easy to understand issues of The Deen

    may ALLAH reward you in this life and in the Hereafter

  • A'isyah

    Mashaallah tabarakallah subhanallah alaiki,
    indeed very beautiful and deep reminder for the heart

    But I have a question, how to fall in love with the Real Thing?
    Through the means of Du’a and knowledge (‘ilm) ?

  • Mevi Durrani

    MA…Allah has blessed you with art of expression and beauty of transforming the thoughts into words…very very nice article sis :)

  • Aida

    beautifully written and well said .
    جزاكي الله كل خبر :)

  • Freya Cesare

    Beautiful post. Thank you.

  • Freya Cesare

    Beautiful post. Thank you.

  • Imissyh

    Well writtento describes my life dillemma till to this day….I was uneasy abt certain thngs…I have questions…this is what I’m looking for…something to soothes my feelings inside…..

  • Imissyh

    Well writtento describes my life dillemma till to this day….I was uneasy abt certain thngs…I have questions…this is what I’m looking for…something to soothes my feelings inside…..

  • A.

    Great article! I have one question . . . what if the attachment you have to someone/something actually helps you come closer to Allah (swt). Isn’t that essential what you want in this life, to have people/things that remind you of Allah (swt). In this case, is there bad in this too . . . like you increase your prayers, dikhr, etc, but at the same time you feel pain/heartache because you are longing for this person/something.

    • Yaseen00

      good question and of course anything that brings you closer to Allah is good for you.

    • Muhammad Hamza

      assalamu alaikum,,,though the one who is bringing U closer to Allah swt is in haraam relation with U,,,like girlfriend or boyfriend,,,then obviously being in this relation displeases Allah swt,,,irrespective of becoming close to Allah,,,ultimately u r repeatedly in a haraam relation,,,which will ultimately end up hurting u.

    • Shayan

      Anything/ Anyone that brings you closer to Allah is good for you..in regards to boyfriend/ girlfriend, well do it the Islamic way and talk to your parents for the girls’ hand in marriage…remember Bibi Khadijah asked for the Prophet’s (saw) hand in marriage and they loved each other very heavily…Love Allah and He will bring you closer to everything that is good for you :)

    • Anisa_hussain786

      if a person brings you closer to Allah this sounds like the spouse for you. But keep it halal.Do istikhara and pray to Allah he reunites you with this person if not theres something better in store for you Inshallah :)

  • Shireensultanahmed

    Assalam Alaikum,
    whatever you have written sister is absolutely true,most of us face it …..InshaAllah your article will help us fall in love with something greater …..JazakAllah Khayr. :) :)

  • Freedomtoes

    A very interesting and much anticipated piece Yasmin. I think its safe to say it takes one to know one in order to write a piece like this. Only after exploring Islam do I really feel like I know what love is. All I knew before were just theories, things I thought I knew through my experiences. Now I have some understanding of Islam and my experiences to take me to the next level. This one’s timeless, like all the rest. JK

  • Tamanna

    mashaAllah sister you write so beautifully!! Its like your words literally speaks to everyone subhanaAllah. May Allah(SWT) bless you immensely! Ameen to all the dua’s

  • That was a beautiful reminder, JazakAllah Khair dear sis. :) <3

  • Azizah

    SubhanAllah, it seems something really heavy when off my shoulders.. Jazaka AllahKhair ya Ukhti..I havent got this advise from elsewhere before… A+

  • Ayesha

    mashallah mashallah appreciating all your reflections which takes the words out of my mouth..Allaho Akbar Jazak alkhayran

  • Muhammad Hamza

    Masha allah Sis,,,very good article,,,answered my few questions just waiting for the Company of like minded friends so that to move forward in controlling the different desires.

  • Shums_shums

    amazing,mashAllah! may Allah(swt) reward u! Ameen!

  • Fatimaiqbal007

    All praise is to ALLAH….this is such a mind blowin article….Jazak’ALLAH khair Yasmin…this is such a blessin of ALLAH(SWT) that I have read this article!

  • Sumaiyaali2

    Alhamdulillah…thank you, this is an eye opener for an ignorant me. I used to chase for love coz i feel great emptiness within me…I’m still struggling to let go the love of someone very dear to my heart, but the more I tried the more frustrated I’ll be. I feel tht I’m not being appreciated, ignored, taken for granted. I hope I can change ths feeling becoz ths has impacted my life style so much. I am not able to sleep and eat well coz I feel insecure of ths superficial relationship. I am trying to shift my attention to Al-Quran and the meaning, I hope my emptiness wud b.
    e filled and I wud be happier

    • Naqshibandi2010

      May Allah help u, dear sis…I’ve read ur comment and it reminds me of my life.

    • Anonymous89

      Asalaamu Alaykum sis – I was in a similar situation a few years ago, i felt so very dependant on this other to the extent where I’d get so frustrated, my life felt so chaotic at that time and I felt so incredibly depressed! I made dua to Allah because I was confused – I was trying to leave this other individual for the sake of Allah (swt) yet I felt so depressed and upset all the time. I asked for Allah (swt) to take away these horrible feeling of emptiness and to numb this pain – alhamdulillah Allah helped me through and filled my heart with love towards Allah. subhanAllah I’m at a point where that individual doesn’t even cross my mind. I do not know of your situation and whether youve already done this,, but just some friendly advice from another sister, talk to and ask Allah sincerely – seek more Islamic knowledge and inshaAllah I hope Allah (swt) helps you in your struggle and fills your heart with love for Allah, all the best :)

      • escapeReality

        I have been through this…I would like to share my story.. but only if anyone is interested?

        • Sha

          Sis please do share the story.. I’m frustrated as I’ve just “lost” my fiancee as he said that he saw someone else during the istikharah prayer.. And it hurts me a lot.. We’re just about to get married.. I really don’t know how to get myself back to normal.. :(

    • SisterSierra

      May Allah help you sister and make it easy for you..

      May Allah bless us all and light our lives with true islamic knowledge. May Allah bless you sister Yasmin for your amazing works. May every single person who reads this article be truly benefited.. Ameen! :)

  • Hopeinamail

    subhanAllah this is the exact thing that I have been dealing with for the past few days. May Allah reward her with jennatal firdous

  • Fatiahmed001

    Assalamu Alaikum, just exactly what I need. JZK.

  • Princess_shamira

    shokran, this article gave me lots to think about. I would love to be constantly reminded about things like this :)

  • Londongal121

    This article is essential for those with broken hearts. Like myself. I am struggling to get over someone and having to lose him to someone else. And its true the struggle is because something better has not yet come. i cant eat nor sleep, i find solace in reading articles like these and crying til my eyes can no longer stay open. I hope we are all to get over any heartbreak we have and think about akhira instead

    • Riaz

      Salaams. Hope you feeling better as it must be difficult for you. Inshallah you will find the best person and Allah will make everything very easy for you. Do not destroy yourself because of this as we know Allah has always something better planned for us.

  • Samairaandy

    jazakAllah khair..such beautifully written!!!!

  • Rehab Muqeet

    Beautiful reminder! <3
    Jazak'Allahu Khair.

  • Mydah Tariq

    Amazing article, put so beautifully with such eloquency, with accurate analogies! this is a perspective seldom tackled but often felt.. so JazaakAllah for putting it in words and helping us all out here.

  • MashAllah , awesome,loved it :)

  • Ashna Rahim

    Assalamu Alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakathuh!
    JazakAllah Khair !!

    It’s really true, we are soo much attached to this worldy things that we often tend to forget out greater responsibilities.

    Ofcourse if do things for the Sake and LOve of Allah s.w.t alone , then we dont have to fear loosing anything that we think is the most precious of All, because Allah Knows what’s the best for us, and He always has got something far more Better for us in store when we live our life pleasing Him! :)

    BarakAllahu Feekum!

  • Hunza

    Assalam o alaikum:
    Very well done :) I don’t even have words to express my feelings after reading this, May Allah give us the love of real thing and also reward you for this great effort..
    Aamen, continue the good work and remember me in your prayers, May Allah guide us, show us the correct path and give us the courage to follow that path aamen

  • Mudy

    So beautiful mashallah

    Your a inspiration. Were I am in life I’m gaining strength from Allah as I filled my heart with worldy desires and false love everything you have said is just how we have all behaved so foolishly addicted to something that would not take us to the hereafter! Keep up the good work your words are so comforting JazakAllah Kahyr

  • StudentofKnowledge

    May Allah bless you Yasmin. You are a great role model to the young Muslimahs of today…reading your posts encourage me to keep going in what i want to do.
    May Allah grant you janat al firdaous insha’Allah and keep you amongst the righteous. Ameen.
    Beautiful Article.

  • Zakcaprius

    the article is really good …jazakAllah…i have been going thru an ordeal since lasrt 3mnths my wife left to her parents place and does not want to come back.her parents and her are conditioning me to take a new home other wise she will not come back even though we have a good house with my mom and sis .well her stubborness apart she not evened called once to chevk my khairiyat when i have tried many times to bring her back.this beahviour is going on since my marriage for 1yr.and i have been bringing hrr back again and agsinfulfilling her different conditions.now i know she doesnt love me and people say she is not rght person for me.but i still cant help get her of my mind.

    • musyrifah

      so poor of you :'( ..keep your faith and prayer constantly.in shA ALLAH,,someday soon u’ll get the happiness.may Allah ease ur life.amen

      • Anonymous

        Salam brother, have you considered having you and your wife live separately from your mom and sister? It seems like that is what she’s asking. Living separate from your mom and sister does not mean you are cutting them off or being a bad son. It is important for you and your wife to also have your own space and privacy. And Allah knows best.

  • umm zahra

    Exactly what I need! JazakAllah kheyr. It is most hardest thing to come over what you have lost and what you loved the most, where every happiness in your life was dependent on that thing. But, now, I have realised that, always love Allah more thank anything else and love other just for the sake of Allah(swt)

  • Guest

    “Even if the King had given some authority to the servant, we’d know very well that the power to give and take rests ultimately with the King—and the King alone” an accurate analogy, Sister Yasmin. Understanding this concept has helped me become less dependent on creation. Jazaka Allah Khair. Your articles inspire me all the time. Baraka Allah feek.

  • Nusrat

    So beautiful. Masha ALLAH. May Allah(SWT) bless you immensely. Ameen

  • Iman

    I’ve read this article so many times but it never fails to be such a great reminder to me as to the nature of this world. JazakAllah khair

  • Muhajiba_maira

    Subhan ALLAH!

    Sister Yasmeen I love you for the sake of ALLAH and your articles are like Imaan boosters for me and I’m sure for others too :)

  • Sadaf_Ali

    :) beautiful, simply beautiful. Experiencing His Love must be over-whelming feeling indeed!
    and a sole foundation of pure souls

  • Khadarbarud

    You make life much easier to cope with my sister.. Alhamdulillah

  • Arsathmohammed

    assalaamu alaikkum sistem masha allah very good pls tell such a things to strong our imaan

  • amina

    Assalam Aleykum,
    Thank you so much for this beautiful article please my brothers and sisters pray for me to heal i have kids to raise and very weak with broken heart thank you

  • jazakallah khairun for this beautiful post…..
    may ALLAH accepts ur acts of ibbadah… :)

  • jazakAllah khayr for this beautiful piece. Its the first time i read any of your articles and subhanAllah this was like a heart to heart talk for me.

  • Aniqa

    this is so REAL haha. You did an amazing job Yasmin ji! May Rab-ul-Izzat bless you always,Ameen! :)

  • Laila

    May God bless you Yasmin..I love your work.

  • Assalamualkum dear sister i luvd ur article its very pushing n has real words but i would like to add one thing hea that hijab also consists ov face covering wid the veil if ull promote the truth ur words have more effect inshAllah besides em not lukin down on n y one just trying to promote the truth wch has been chnged bu many ppl ! … it might have an argument but its very clear that face is the attractive part of a women n the main beuty ! kindly ponder over it ! jazakAllah coz mking religion easier on r own will do nothing but rather a chnge in the real islam !

  • Anonymous312

    I am a Non-Muslim who has been searching for guidance on a certain situation that has seemed to consume the past year of my life. This article is one of the best things I have ever read, and has honestly made me feel that I am not alone. You have helped me by this one article so much!! Thank you for writing this. You are changing people’s lives for the better!

    • Anonymous

      Wow, your message honestly gave me goosebumps. I pray that God eases your struggle and opens all the doors of Truth for you.


  • Haajar

    Fall in love. Fall in love with something greater. Fall in love with the Real thing. See the Mansion.
    Only then, will we stop playing in the dollhouse.
    Spectacularly said! Masha’Allah. May Allah preserve you, your family and may He increase you in knowledge.

  • deen

    MashaAllah bless you. it has been 6 years and I have let go but at times you still wonder it happened some one told me look at it positively may Allah did it for you because he loves you and wants you to get close to him. Truly Allah is always there when no one is there for you being close to him and falling love with him is the best thing.

  • Maria Haddad

    This article changed my life. Jazaki Allah Kheir Yasmin. Can’t wait to finally see you in RIS Toronto inchAllah

  • khaulahlyn-Indonesia

    Alhamdlilillah sister, jazakillahi khair, may Allah ease me to meet you. It might be Allah who has guided me to revisit your facebook page then entering your blog and choose this category of article. But surely I’m in my way to let go someone I really want to have a good life with. Its really hard at the first time, to know that he might be ask someone else better than me, but I have to do this, I have to make sure that my love toward him is based on my love to Allah. I realized lately if its based on Allah, I will never try to jump into any kind of relationship before marriage. I decided to cut any relations with this ‘someone’. Of course its such a surprise for us. A -hard to do- thing for me since I ever addicted to him so much with his integrity in my sight. I asked Allah’s mercy to forgive me.
    Jazakillah khair sister, your article strengthen me, the one that has decided to choose something she doesn’t want. I want to be a writer like you, to help people finding the true happiness and to be a young muslimah role model nowadays. So sorry for the late reading. Barakallah.

  • Zara

    I absolutely love Yasmin Mogahed she is incredibly gifted mashaAllah and I pray that Alah blesses her always. I loved this article and really needed it just now <3 Salam to all my lovely brothers and sisters xxx

  • Mouna

    Can’t wait to meet you in person to give you a big hug to thank you for such a great book <3 I love you so much Yasmin <3 Hamdulil Allah <3

  • Ashraf Morsy

    Allah Akbrar, I am really delighted with your words because I found you are the only one who understood my problem. Thank you very much

  • Rahimah

    Subahanallah :)

  • SubhanaAllah…My tears rolled down reading this at these beautiful words. JazakAllah khairan..

  • Anonymous

    All I can say is: Wow!
    Allahu Akbar!

  • Anonymous


  • Syed Fahad Ahmed

    Assalamualaikum Sister Yasmin!

    Masha’allah your article is very enlightening…you’ve written it in such a way that each & every person, no matter what he’s struggling to give for the sake of Allah, can benefit from it…Just like the other brothers & sisters who have read this article & commented, I too am going through a struggle to give up someone for the sake of Allah…its becoming really hard nowadays…. no matter how much I try I end up being preoccupied thinking only about that one person…the irony of my situation is that I felt stronger attachment towards that person after knowing that our relationship is something which is disliked by Allah…now I wish I had never known that person…I wish I hadn’t become so attached to that person…but I also realise that whatever happens, happens by the Will of Allah… I think its Allah’s way of testing my sincerity & commitment to following Islam…

    I learnt something amazing from this article…that only giving up something for Allah’s sake is not enough…you even have to replace the thing that you gave up with a far better substitute… only then will you be able to fight against your Nafs & lead a peaceful life…

    I just hope that I can implement this piece of advice in my life….

    I hope I succeed in falling in love with the real thing…

    Please make Dua to Allah to make it easy for me Sister…may Allah reward you immensely for your hazing article….



  • Syed Fahad Ahmed

    Please make Dual to Allah to make it easy for me Sister…may Allah reward you immensely for your amazing article….



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