Have you ever ask yourself why are you praying?
I do my prayer five times a day, not a thing that one should be proud of, I know. There were days when I skip pray because I was on travel or I fell asleep and woke up late. Or simply because I didn’t want to do it. I know it’s bad, but faith has its condition. Sometimes it’s roaring up high but sometimes it goes down to the endless black pit.
When I was in Korea for a summer program, I had a Korean-American friend as my deskmate. He asked me why do I pray. To be honest, I couldn’t answer him. I said so my soul would be in peace. He asked me again, really? He saw the doubt in my eyes. And then he started talking about his own religion but I didn’t listen to him because I was thinking about his first question. Why do I pray? Is it because I need to, or because my mom would be mad if I didn’t, or because I’m afraid of the afterlife?
I sometimes think it’s the latter.
Isn’t like a common conception, to do your ibadah because you’re afraid of God’s wrath? But have you thought that maybe, maybe it’s wrong to do so? Not that I accuse people who do their pray out of fear is bad. It’s just this thing keep bugging me since years ago.
You may familiar with the ‘threat’: if you leave salah, you’ll end up in Hell, you’ll receive a hellish punishment later in the afterlife. They keep telling us about the punishment so we would reflect about our wrongdoings and remember that whenever we’re going to skip salah. It’s good to be reminded of, but for some people, it might take a toll on their perception of prayer.
‘If I didn’t do this, I’ll end up in hell, I will make God angry’
I think it would be nicer if we “promote” the prayer, or in another word, encourage people who skip their prayer, with the Rewards. With something good that makes them remember that they have The Gracious and The Most Merciful Lord above them. Even nicer if we could make them pray because they need to.
The best thing is that when you do your salah for your need, not because you’re afraid of the wrath or because you want to impress someone. You do it because you love it.