Lessons from Surah Yusuf. Surah Yusuf was revealed to Prophet Muhammad PBUH during the year of sorrow (aam-ul- huzn.) This was known as the year of regret because Prophet Muhammad PBUH lost his beloved wife Hazrat Khadijah and his uncle Abu Talib and also the incident of Ta’if took place in the same year.
This Surah was revealed to give comfort to Prophet Muhammad PBUH and beautifully explained that Allah is with the patient. However, if you read this surah with translation, you realize that it is full of the most beautiful life lessons.
WHAT DOES SURAH YUSUF TEACH US?
This Surah is the only Surah in the Quran that has a unified story and was revealed in a chronological manner. This Surah beautifully unveils the story of patience, faith, and iman and narrates how Yusuf’s patience and belief opened doors for him.
If you haven’t heard the story before, or you would want to go through it again, here’s a video that will tell you all about it:
↓ 16- Father-Child Relationship
In this Surah, a beautiful bond between a child and a father has been narrated. The love of Hazrat Yakub (AS) for his beautiful child Hazrat Yūsuf was unconditional. He was the 11th son of Yakub and was his shadow. He was the most loved child and had almost all the good traits and habits of his father. Yakub AS always kept him safe from dangers and from his brother’s hatred. Prophet Yūsuf narrated his dream to his father and confided in him which shows that he trusted and loved Yakub. When Yūsuf’s brothers threw him in the well, Yakub lost his eyesight due to crying in pain for his beloved son. He never let go of the hope of his son’s return and always prayed to Allah. Hence, this Surah teaches us to trust our children and to always be there for them. You should also have a look at our earlier post on the Status of Fathers in Islam & 30 Islamic Quotes on Fathers.
↓ 15- Keeping Blessings Hidden
We have been blessed by Allah SWT in so many ways. This beautiful Surah teaches us to keep our blessings and success to ourselves and hidden. Showing them off to others and announcing in public invites the evil eye and envious stares. Yakub AS interpreted the dream of Yūsuf, in which Sun, Moon and 11 stars were prostrating him, giving the good news to Yūsuf that he would be a Prophet just like his father. But he asked him to keep it a secret from his brothers and others because jealousy is a human emotion and can destroy anyone’s faith even the sons of a Nabi. This clearly shows that evil eye and jealousy exist and we need to protect ourselves.
↓ 14- Allah’s Plans are Bigger than Human Conspiracies
Allah in the Quran Himself states that He’s the best planner. We human beings plan and organize our lives forgetting that He’s the only One who is making it all possible. He’s the One who carries our plans according to His wish. Yūsuf’s (AS) brothers planned to throw him in the well in order to create distance between him and Yakub AS but Allah, the Al Haq, planned something else for Yūsuf. He was rescued with the help of Allah SWT by a group of passengers from the well. He was then sold to the Aziz of Egypt who raised him like one of his own. When Aziz’z Wife and other women seduced the beautiful Yusuf, he rejected them asking for the help of Allah. Zulekha blamed Yūsuf and as a result, he was locked in the prison. But after many years, Zulekha’s conspiracies and plotting couldn’t stand in front of the truth, after years Yusuf’s innocence was proved. Indeed Allah is the best Planner.
↓ 13- Emotion of Jealousy
The emotion of jealousy is a complex one. It destroys a person’s character and disturbs his inner peace. It arises when someone else is better and more successful and the mantra of a jealous person is ‘If I can’t have it, nobody can have it either’. He can never be happy over someone’s happiness or success and in Islam, jealousy is the most forbidden emotion to feel as it eats a person’s iman and corrupts his heart and soul. It makes a person forget his own blessings and concentrate on every negative aspect of his life. Just like Yusuf’s brothers, who were jealous of his relationship with Yakub and decided to part them from each other. The hatred and jealousy that they carried for Yusuf made them blind to the blessings that they had and they forgot that they were the sons of a Nabi. They acted on their jealousy which was induced by shaytan and it caused them problems later and they lost respect in Yakub’s eyes.
↓ 12- Reliance on Allah Alone
Allah Alone is sufficient for us. He promises to listen to our Duas and sincere pleas. When in troubling situations, we’re supposed to put our entire trust on the creator, Allah SWT and when we do that, He never disappoints us. We shouldn’t just say it from our tongues, our hearts should believe that He will listen to us. We need to have the trust of Yusuf AS, as he trusted Him in the most difficult situations. When he was in the well, He knew that it was only Allah who would save him from the darkness. The trust of Yusuf AS in Allah’s help had been consistent and strong when facing Zulekha’s persuasion and during his days in the prison. He held the rope of trust in Allah strongly and his faith never collapsed. It was his trust and faith that Allah saved him from all tribulations and difficulties.
↓ 11- Patience Against Adversities
Dunya is a place of trials and tribulations for a Muslim. In order to survive through them, he has to have a firm grip on the rope of patience and trust in Allah SWT. Allah in the Quran Himself says that He is near to His creatures and is with the patient ones and He has shown us that through different examples of His special men in Quran. Similarly, In this Surah, Yusuf and his father Yakub become the epitome of Sabr while facing painful situations which later became a beautiful example for us Muslims today.
The patience of Yakub:
Yakub, who loved his son Yusuf AS most ardently, became heartbroken on losing Yusuf to his other sons’ jealousy. His loss was great but he knew that his Allah is greater and He would give him Sabr and he gave the matter in His hands as his patience was rock strong and faith in Allah was firm. When he lost another son (Benjamin) to his brothers, the loss reminded him of Yusuf and multiplied the pain in his heart manifold. But even at this point, his patience was the only thing that kept him together and gave him hope for his both son’s return.
The Patience of Yūsuf:
Yusuf AS had faced hard times at the hands of his own blood brothers who threw him in a dark well but the darkness of the well didn’t affect his patience and trust in Allah SWT. He had spent many years in prison for not losing his modesty and Chasity when Zulekha seduced him and blamed him wrongly. He never thought about taking revenge from his brothers or Zulekha and trusted Allah in all matters. His patience and belief made him overcome all the hardships and Allah made him the Aziz of Egypt. Here are 30 Beautiful Islamic Quotes on Sabr & Patience.
↓ 10- Pardah Between a Man and Woman
Surah Yusuf mentions the interaction between Aziz’s wife Zulekha and Yusuf AS and she became overwhelmed with his beauty and handsome face. Zulekha did everything to seduce him but he was a pious man and rejected her and called Allah for help. This situation clearly indicates that there’s Pardah between a man and a woman in Islam. If a namehram man and a woman are alone, there’s always Shaytan between them, therefore Allah has commanded to observe Pardah.
↓ 9- Analyzing Sensitive Situations
In the present modern times, every system has developed and changed over the years. But the Quran holds the same importance and teaches us each and everything. This beautiful Surah teaches us to analyze sensitive situations that require just judgments. When Yūsuf AS was wrongly blamed by Zulekha, Aziz decided to announce a prison sentence for Yusuf when some wise man asked him to analyze the situation logically. He suggested if Yusuf’s shirt was torn from behind, then he’s innocent and if it was torn from the front, he’s to be blamed. As his shirt was torn from behind, the case had to be decided in his favor.
↓ 8- The Truth Always Prevails
When Zulekha decided to show Yusuf’s beauty to the women who talked about her character, they became so bewildered by his beauty that they had cut their hands. They tried to seduce Yusuf, but the pious man didn’t lose his faith and Iman and asked for Allah’s refuge. He was again blamed wrongly so he was locked in the prison. After so many years when the kind of Egypt saw a dream and wanted its interpretation, the cupbearer who had been in prison with Yusuf suggested his name who could interpret dreams. After interpreting the dream, Yusuf was given freedom but he rejected it. As he wanted his innocence to be proved. The kind called for Zulekha, who accepted her blame and thus Yusuf’s truth came out. No matter how worse the situations seem, the truth never stays hidden, it always prevails.
↓ 7- Example of Yusuf for Administrative Authority
Yusuf AS had been given the reign of the finance department in the kingdom of Egypt. There was a need to store the food as the king dreamt that there will be 7 years of blessings following the seven years of drought and then for seven years people will get rain. Yusuf AS responsibly took matters in his hands and stored enough food in the first seven years. When the difficult seven years came, he gave stored food to the people. He never thought about himself or going back to his country, he only took care of the people and the country and set an example that the people in an Islamic government should follow Yusuf AS footsteps and work for the welfare of the people.
↓ 6- Kindness and Compassion
This beautiful and incredible Surah teaches us to be kind and compassionate towards everyone even to our enemies or the ones who’ve hurt us. Yusuf is the perfect example as he reminded kind to his brothers when they visited Egypt. He never thought about taking revenge or hurting them or taunting them. He treated them nicely and later forgave them.
↓ 5- Never Despair of Allah’s Mercy
Allah’s mercy is above everything. He’s the most merciful and He Himself says in the Quran that we should never lose hope as Allah paves our way from the most impossible outcomes. Yakub never despaired of Allah’s mercy, he had a firm belief that his sons would return to him eventually. Allah rewarded him for his Sabr through the reunion with his sons.
↓ 4- Be a Forgiver
Forgiveness is very hard but is encouraged in Islam. Forgiving the ones who’ve hurt us, is an act that is loved by Allah SWT. Yusuf AS’s forgiveness for his brothers teaches us that if a Nabi who’s been treated so badly by his brothers can forgive them, show kindness and compassion, then we should be able to follow his and other Nabi and Rasool’s path and forgive those who hurt us. Forgiveness is indeed a great virtue for Muslims, so do have a look at these 30 Best Islamic Quotes on Forgiveness.
↓ 3- Status of Parents
Status of parents in Islam has been given great importance. In this Surah, it is narrated that Yusuf AS always respected his parents. He never went against them and always loved them unconditionally. Despite acquiring a position in Egypt, he welcomed his parents with the utmost respect and love and made them sit on the throne.
↓ 2- Thanking Allah For His Blessings
Shukr is to be grateful to Allah SWT for his blessings that He bestows upon us. It is an important aspect of the religion and a grateful person is loved by Allah SWT. Gratitude and thankfulness increase the blessings as Allah promised in Quran that He provides more if his creation is thankful to Him, the most Merciful. Similarly, this Surah teaches us a beautiful lesson that no matter what, we should always be thankful to Allah like Yusuf AS after having all his family around him, made shukr to Allah SWT for everything and every blessing as it was Allah who made it all possible. Here are 25 Beautiful Thanking Allah Quotes.
↓ 1- With Hardship, There’s Ease
The story of Yusuf AS is the perfect example of patience, tolerance, forgiveness, faith, and Iman. Yusuf AS had been afflicted with many hardships and difficulties but he never complained to his Allah. He always remained patient because he knew that He will take him out of the darkness of well and then the prison. His father Yakub, after losing his beloved son Yusuf, had a firm belief that Allah will reunite him with his son. After trials and tribulations, both had been blessed with ease by the only One Allah. Verily, with hardship there’s ease.