بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
And man supplicates for evil as he supplicates for good, and man is ever hasty. (Surat al-Isra, 17:11)
This verse talks about those of us who make a supplication in haste, asking for what is evil, in the same way that we ask for good. For example, in a moment of anger, a person may make du’a against himself or his wealth or his family, saying things like, “May God curse you.” At the same time, that same person makes du’a for well-being and blessings for his family. Ibn Abbas said that it is a mercy from Allah that He does not answer our du’as for evil as He does our du’as for good, because otherwise we would be destroyed.
While the tafseer talks about asking overtly for something that is evil or bad, this made me think about our desperate du’as for things that we think are good, but in actuality are bad for us. We may spend many nights praying to Allah for something, and then wonder, “Why isn’t Allah answering my du’a?” There are many reasons why our du’as may not be answered in the way that we want them to – Allah answers our prayers in His way – but one of them is that we, too, may be asking for evil, though we may not know it. You might be asking Allah to help you get a certain job, or to get married to a particular person, or to help you get something, but Allah knows that the thing you are asking for specifically contains evil for you. So in His mercy, He actually averts it from you. From your perspective, you might think Allah has not answered your du’a. You might give up on asking Him. But that would be the wrong reaction to have. He has answered you, you just don’t know it.
Thank God for His Mercy and always ask Him for His blessings. And may He protect our from our own overt and subtle ‘evil’ du’as.