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Article 17 : 7 steps to overpower your anger

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بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم


In a moment of anger, when our emotions burst out, we loose self-control and we utter words and do things that we regret later on, because these are things that we would not do in a normal state. Therefore, it is necessary for us to know how to manage and overpower this anger, in order to control our words and our actions.

We may have tried several methods to control our anger, but to no avail. However, there is still hope, because the best of men, the most eloquent, the most informed and the most learned of men, teach us methods and ways to control our anger. Indeed, who better to teach us than the Prophet , who receives revelation from Allah ?

وَلَا يُنَبِّئُكَ مِثْلُ خَبِيرٍ

And none can inform you like [one] Acquainted [with all matters].

[Surah Fatir s.35 v.14]

The advice of the Prophet

عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ أَنَّ رَجُلاً، قَالَ لِلنَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم أَوْصِنِي‏.‏ قَالَ“‏ لاَ تَغْضَبْ“‏‏.فَرَدَّدَ مِرَارًا، قَالَ“‏ لاَ تَغْضَبْ

Narrated Abu Huraira رضي الله عنه:
A man said to the Prophet , “Advise me! “The Prophet said, “Do not become angry and furious.” The man asked (the same) again and again, and the Prophet said in each case, “Do not become angry and furious.”

[Sahih al-Bukhari 6116]

The scholars explain that this advice means that in state of anger, one should remain composed and calm, in order to disperse it and not act while being angry.

Strength and righteousness reside in controlling your anger

وَالْكَاظِمِينَ الْغَيْظَ وَالْعَافِينَ عَنِ النَّاسِ ۗ وَاللَّهُ يُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِينَ

And who restrain anger and who pardon the people – and Allah loves the doers of good

[Surah Ala Imran v.134]

عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ :لَيْسَ الشَّدِيدُ بِالصُّرَعَةِ إِنَّمَا الشَّدِيدُ الَّذِي يَمْلِكُ نَفْسَهُ عِنْدَ الْغَضَبِ

Abu Huraira رضي الله عنه reported Allah’s Messenger as saying:
“The strong-man is not one who wrestles well but the strong man is one who controls himself when he is in a fit of rage.”

[Sahih al-Bukhari 5763, Sahih Muslim 2609]

عن أنس أَنَّ النَّبِيَّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ مَرَّ بِقَوْمٍ يَصْطَرِعُونَ فَقَالَ مَا هَذَا قَالُوا يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ هَذَا فُلانٌ الصَّرِيعُ مَا يُصَارِعُ أَحَدًا إِلَّا صَرَعَهُ فَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ أَلَا أَدُلُّكُمْ عَلَى مَنْ هُوَ أَشَدُّ مِنْهُ رَجُلٌ ظَلَمَهُ رَجُلٌ فَكَظَمَ غَيْظَهُ فَغَلَبَهُ وَغَلَبَ شَيْطَانَهُ وَغَلَبَ شَيْطَانَ صَاحِبِهِ

Anas رضي الله عنه reported: the Prophet , passed by people wrestling and he said, “What is this?” They said, “O Messenger of Allah, this is a wrestler and no one can wrestle like him!” The Prophet said, “Shall I not tell you who is even stronger than him? It is a man wronged by another man, yet he suppresses his rage and thus he defeats it. He defeats his devil, and he defeats the devil of his companion.”

[Musnad al-Bazzâr 7272]

فقال رسولُ اللهِ صلَّى اللهُ عليه وسلَّم الصُّرَعَةُ كُلُّ الصُّرَعَةِ الصُّرَعَةُ كُلُّ الصُّرَعَةِ الصُّرَعَةُ كلُّ الصُّرَعَةِ الرجلُ الَّذِي يَغْضَبُ يشتَدُّ غضبُهُ ويحمَرُّ وَجْهُهُ ويَقْشَعِرُّ شَعْرُهُ فَيَصْرَعُ غضبَهُ

The Messenger of Allah said : “The real tough type of wrestling, the real tough type of wrestling, the real tough type of wrestling, is a man becoming angry with an intense anger, while his face become red, his hair shivers, but overcomes his anger.”

[Musnad Ahmad 23115]

Means of controlling one’s anger

Seek refuge with Allah from the devil

حَدَّثَنَا سُلَيْمَانُ بْنُ صُرَدٍ، قَالَ اسْتَبَّ رَجُلاَنِ عِنْدَ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَجَعَلَ أَحَدُهُمَا يَغْضَبُ وَيَحْمَرُّ وَجْهُهُ فَنَظَرَ إِلَيْهِ النَّبِيُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَقَالَإِنِّي لأَعْلَمُ كَلِمَةً لَوْ قَالَهَا لَذَهَبَ ذَا عَنْهُ أَعُوذُ بِاللَّهِ مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ الرَّجِيمِ ‏‏

Sulaiman b. Surad reported that two persons abused each other in the presence of Allah’s Apostle and one of them fell into a rage and his face became red. Allah’s Apostle saw him and said:
I know of a wording; if he were to utter that, he would get out (of the fit of anger) (and the wording is): I seek refuge with Allah from Satan, the accursed.

[Sahih Muslim 2610, sahih al-Bukhari 3282]

Keeping silent

عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ قَالَ‏:‏ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم‏: عَلِّمُوا وَيَسِّرُوا، عَلِّمُوا وَيَسِّرُوا، ثَلاَثَ مَرَّاتٍ، وَإِذَا غَضِبْتَ فَاسْكُتْ، مَرَّتَيْنِ

Ibn ‘Abbas رضي الله عنه said, “The Messenger of Allah , ‘ Teach and make it easy. Teach and make it easy.’ three times. He went on, ‘When you are angry, be silent’ twice.”

[Al Adab al Mufrad 1320]

This also means that we can leave the place that causes this irritation, and come back, one the anger has gone and the situation calmed down.

Changing your posture

عَنْ أَبِي ذَرٍّ قَالَ قَالَ رَسُول اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ إِذَا غَضِبَ أَحَدُكُمْ وَهُوَ قَائِمٌ فَلْيَجْلِسْ فَإِنْ ذَهَبَ عَنْهُ الْغَضَبُ وَإِلَّا فَلْيَضْطَجِعْ

Abu Dharr رضي الله عنه reported: The Messenger of Allah said to us, “If one of you is angry while he is standing, let him sit down so his anger will leave him; otherwise, let him lie down.”

[Sunan Abu Dawud 4782]

Perform ablution

عن عطية بن عروة قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ إِنَّ الْغَضَبَ مِنْ الشَّيْطَانِ وَإِنَّ الشَّيْطَانَ خُلِقَ مِنْ النَّارِ وَإِنَّمَا تُطْفَأُ النَّارُ بِالْمَاءِ فَإِذَا غَضِبَ أَحَدُكُمْ فَلْيَتَوَضَّأْ

‘Atiyyah رضي الله عنه reported: The Messenger of Allah said, “Verily, anger comes from Satan and Satan was created from fire. Fire is extinguished with water, so if you become angry then perform ablution with water.”

[Sunan Abu Dawud 4784]

Reminding the reward of controlling one’s anger

عَنْ سَهْلِ بْنِ مُعَاذِ بْنِ أَنَسٍ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ قَالَ :مَنْ كَظَمَ غَيْظًا وَهُوَ قَادِرٌ عَلَى أَنْ يُنْفِذَهُ دَعَاهُ اللَّهُ عَلَى رُءُوسِ الْخَلاَئِقِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ حَتَّى يُخَيِّرَهُ فِي أَىِّ الْحُورِ شَاءَ

It was narrated from Sahl bin Mu’adh bin Anas, from his father, that the Messenger of Allah said:

“Whoever restrains his anger when he is able to implement it, Allah will call him before all of creation on the Day of Resurrection, and will give him his choice of any houri that he wants.”

[Sahih at-Tirmidhi 2021, sunan Ibn Majah 4186]

مَنْ كَفَّ غضبَهُ كَفَّ اللهُ عنهُ عذابَهُ ، ومَنْ خزنَ لسانَهُ سترَ اللهُ عَوْرَتَهُ ، ومَنِ اعْتَذَرَ إلى اللهِ قَبِلَ اللهُ عُذْرَهُ

“The one who controls his anger, Allah protects him from His punishment. Whoever withholds his tongue, Allah conceals his faults. Whoever apologizes to Allah, Allah accepts his apologies.”

[Silsilah as-Sahiha 2360]

عن ابن عمر رضي الله عنهما قال النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم : ما من جُرعةٍ أعظَمُ أجرًا عندَ اللهِ من جُرعةِ غيظٍ كظمَها عبدٌ ابتغاءَ وجْهِ اللهِ

Narrated by Ibn Umar رضى الله عنهما, the Prophet said: “There is no gulp that brings greater reward with Allah than a gulp of anger that a man swallows (suppresses), seeking thereby the Face of Allah.”

[Sahih Targhib 2752, sunan Ibn Majah 4189]

Reminding that anger is the core of all evil

عن حميد بن عبد الرحمن عن رجل من أصحاب النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم قال رجل : يا رسول الله أوصني
قال النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم :
لا تغضب
قال : ففكرت حين النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ما قال فإذا الغضب يجمع الشر كله

Humayd ibn Abdur Rahman narrates from a man from the companions of the Prophet , a man said to the Prophet , “Advise me! “The Prophet said, “Do not become angry and furious.”
When the Prophet said this, I thought about it and realized that anger is the core of all evil.”

[Sahih Targhib 2746]

Follow the example of the Salaf

وعن ابن عباس رضي الله عنهما قال‏:‏ قدم عيينة بن حصن فنزل على ابن أخيه الحر بن قيس، وكان من النفر الذين يدنيهم عمر رضي الله عنه، وكان القراء أصحاب مجلس عمر رضي الله عنه ومشاورته كهولاً كانوا أو شباناً، فقال عيينة لابن أخيه ‏:‏ يا ابن أخي لك وجه عند هذا الأمير فاستأذن لي عليه، فاستأذن فأذن عمر‏.‏ فلما دخل قال‏:‏ هِىَ يا ابن الخطاب، فوالله ما تعطينا الجزل ولا تحكم فينا بالعدل، فغضب عمر رضي الله عنه حتى همّ أن يوقع به، فقال له الحر‏:‏ يا أمير المؤمنين إن الله تعالى قال لنبيه صلى الله عليه وسلم‏:‏ ‏{‏خذ العفو وأمر بالعرف وأعرض عن الجاهلين‏}‏ ‏(‏‏(‏الأعراف: 199‏)‏‏)‏‏.‏ وإن هذا من الجاهلين، والله ما جاوزها عمر حين تلاها، وكان وقافاً عند كتاب الله تعالى‏

Ibn ‘Abbas رضى الله عنهما reported:
‘Uyainah bin Hisn came to Al-Madinah and stayed with his nephew Hurr bin Qais who was among those whom Umar (May Allah be pleased with him) showed favour to. The knowledgeable people (Qurra’), whether they were old or young, had the privilege of joining Umar’s council and he used to consult them. ‘Uyainah said to Hurr: “My nephew, the Leader of the Believers shows favour to you. Will you obtain permission for me to sit with him?” Hurr asked ‘Umar and he accorded permission. When ‘Uyainah came into the presence of ‘Umar, he addressed him thus: “O son of Khattab, you neither bestow much on us nor deal with us justly.” ‘Umar (May Allah be pleased with him) got angry and was about to beat him up when Hurr said: ”O Leader of the Believers, Allah said to His Prophet : ‘ Show forgiveness, enjoin what is good, and turn away from the foolish (i.e., don’t punish them).’ (7:199) This one is from the ignorants. When Hurr recited this, ‘Umar رضي الله عنه became quite motionless in his seat. He always adhered strictly to the Book of Allah.

[Riyad as-Saliheen 50]


Let’s try to follow these steps inshaAllah, in order to overpower our anger, without forgetting to sincerely call upon Allah abundatly to help us :

اللَّهُمَّ بِعِلْمِكَ الْغَيْبَ وَقُدْرَتِكَ عَلَى الْخَلْقِ أَسْأَلُكَ كَلِمَةَ الإِخْلاَصِ فِي الرِّضَا وَالْغَضَبِ

O Allah, by Your knowledge of the unseen and Your power over creation, I ask You to make me true in speech in times of pleasure and in times of anger.

[Sunan an-Nasai 1306]

والله تعالى أعلم 

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Source : 7 Steps To Controlling Your Anger Upon Being Infuriated – Ustadh Abu Taymiyyah

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