14 Nov How to make Dua: Tip #25
Acknowledging ones sins
When one acknowledges ones sins, it helps them realise how much they need the mercy of Allah and adds to the sincerity of the person.
Part of the etiquette of dua is to acknowledge one’s shortcomings and sins in front of Allah. This is also a means of properly worshipping Allah. Abu Hurayrah said: “The best dua is for a person to say: O Allah! You are my Lord, and I am your servant. I have wronged myself, and acknowledge my sins. O my Lord! Forgive me my sins, for You, and only You, are my Lord, and none forgives sins except You!” [Authentic statement of Abu Hurayrah, reported by Ahmad 1/515]
Ali ibn Abi Talib reported that the Prophet [May the Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon him] said: “verily, Allah likes a worshipper who says: ‘There is no one worthy of worship except You. I have wronged myself, so forgive my sins, for none forgives sins except You.’ Allah says: ‘My servant knows that he has a Lord who forgives and punishes!” [Narrated by Ahmad, Abu Dawud, al-Tirmidhi and others from ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib]
The Prophet [May the Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon him] said: “The sayyid al-istighfar (the best dua to ask for forgiveness) is that a person says: O Allah! You are my Lord, there is no one worthy of worship except You. You created me, and I am your slave. And I am (following) Your covenant and Promise as much as I can. I seek Your refuge in the evil that I have done. I acknowledge Your favours upon me, and I acknowledge my sins. So forgive me, since no one forgives sins except You!” [al-Bukhari #6306]
So when one raises one’s hands to Allah, expecting a response from Him, one should also ponder over one’s own relationship with Allah, and the shortcomings that one possesses. in this way the person should recall his many sins, and feel his own humility – that is, he should remember that he is asking One whom he has disobeyed, and sinned against, and not fulfilled his rights upon Him. Let him taste his impudence when he asks Allah for more and more, without fuilfilling the basic deeds that are obligatory upon him.