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According to Quran and Hadith, which actions make somebody long-lived and wealthy?

Zakat? Alms giving? Maintaining relationships with and helping relatives? Obeying and Looking after parents? Behaving well with everybody?

Does having a pious wife have any effect?

What more...?

And what actions readily negate the effects of the aforementioned good deeds? If somebody doesn't pray five times how much effective these good actions will be?

Please provide references from Quran and Hadith.

Please give me a complete and analytical answer.

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You ask an interesting and deep question -- one that has implications in qadar itself.

Let's start with the basics. From a long hadith in Imam Nawawi's famous collection of 40 (emphasis mine):

Verily the creation of each one of you is brought together in his mother’s womb for forty days in the form of a nutfah (a drop), then he becomes an alaqah (clot of blood) for a like period, then a mudghah (morsel of flesh) for a like period, then there is sent to him the angel who blows his soul into him and who is commanded with four matters: to write down his rizq (sustenance), his life span, his actions, and whether he will be happy or unhappy (i.e., whether or not he will enter Paradise).

Simply put, Allah is Al-Aleem; he knows what actions you will take in your lifetime. Based on this, He obviously knows how long you will live or die.

There is also a hadith where one of ummuhaat al-mu'mineen made du'a for someone's life to be extended; Rasulullah replied that she's making du'a about "numbered days" (something fixed), and a du'a for forgiveness an salvation from Hellfire would be better.

On the other hand, there are ahadith like this one (emphasis mine):

Allah's Apostle said, "Whoever loves that he be granted more wealth and that his lease of life be prolonged then he should keep good relations with his Kith and kin." (Bukhari)

Scholars ask, how can you put these two hadith together? The wholistic understanding they came up with is simple: there are two levels of writing of qadar. There is qadar which is known only to Allah, and is writtein in Al-Law Al-Mahfoodh (the protected tablet). This is where your ultimate, final lifespan goes. And there's the qadar which Allah tells the angels, which may be your lifespan before accommodating for any changes for actions like keeping ties of kinship.

If you understand that, the rest of my answer actually addresses your answer.


Actions that increase your lifespan

As far as I can tell from my research, the only activity that increases your life is keeping ties of kinship with your relatives, as mentioned in the hadith above.


Actions that increase your rizq (wealth)

Having Taqwa of Allah: Allah says:

And whoever fears Allah - He will make for him a way out. And will provide for him from where he does not expect. (Surah At-Talaq, verses 2-3)

Istighfaar (seeking forgiveness from Allah): Allah says:

And (Nuh) said, 'Ask forgiveness of your Lord. Indeed, He is ever a Perpetual Forgiver. He will send [rain from] the sky upon you in [continuing] showers, and give you increase in wealth and children and provide for you gardens and provide for you rivers. (Surah Nuh, verses 10-12)

Tawakkul (putting your trust in Allah and taking the means): Umar ibn Al-Khattab said:

If you were to put your trust in Allah the way that Allah deserves, then you would be provided for as the birds are; they leave in search of food at the beginning of the day hungry, and they return at the end of the day full. (Reference)

Fulfilling the Ties of Kinship/Family: The first hadith I mentioned from Bukhari:

Allah's Apostle said, "Whoever loves that he be granted more wealth and that his lease of life be prolonged then he should keep good relations with his Kith and kin." (Bukhari)

Being Thankful: Allah says:

And [remember] when your Lord proclaimed, 'If you are grateful, I will surely increase you [in favor]; but if you deny, indeed, My punishment is severe.'" (Surah Ibrahim, verse 7)

Frequently performing Hajj and Umrah: Rasulullah said:

Follow up between Hajj and Umrah (i.e. continually repeat the performance) because they both eliminate poverty and sins just like a furnace eliminates the dirty impurities of iron, gold and silver. And an accepted Hajj has no reward less than paradise! (Tirmidhi)

And Allah knows best. Look up the book "15 Ways to Increase your Earnings (from the Qur'an and Sunnah) for a more comprehensive and detailed list.

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Let me ask you a question here.... Is there any action we can do better than the prophet(pbuh)?

The reason I ask this because .....when prophet(pbuh) passed away, there was no oil in the lamp ...and...he lived only 62 years...

This simply implies that money and life span is with the will of Allah.

Indeed, your Lord extends provision for whom He wills and restricts [it]. Indeed He is ever, concerning His servants, Acquainted and Seeing.

[Quran 17:30]

the prophet's(pbuh) good deeds were so many as compared to us that .... he would live forever while we would die much sooner.

the prophet's(pbuh) good deeds were so many as compared to us that .... the wealth of the world would get over to equate.

So there is no direct equation "if you do this....so and so will happen". You may do one good deed that Allah might like, and would make you super rich. So keep on doing good...not for the money, but for Allah.

I knew an aunt who lived to see her great grand children, but was in bed for the last nine years. So sometimes having these things is also not the best in the world...

So I recommend asking Allah (as in the Quran) ...

Our Lord, give us in this world [that which is] good and in the Hereafter [that which is] good and protect us from the punishment of the Fire.

[Quran 2:201]

May Allah grant us all a good life here and in the hereafter.

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  • 2
    This answer looks like engaging in a conversation. This is discoraged here. Please check highly upvoted answers to see what kind of tone we expect from answers. And you can also join us in chat to discuss: chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/3819/islam
    – user44
    Jul 21 '12 at 23:43
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    +1 spot on. The concept of Islam is to do deeds to earn hereafter not to get rich and live longer. Jul 22 '12 at 1:52
  • @yasar11732 my interpretation is that this post is addressing the question; it doesn't seem inappropriately conversational to me (oh, ignore the diamond on the right of my name; I don't speak/act as a moderator on Islam.SE) Jul 22 '12 at 10:31
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    This answer defeated the whole purpose of my inquiry.
    – user195
    Jul 22 '12 at 14:37
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    @BROY I knew I was risking a -1 when I gave your answer. But I would be lying if I said "do so and so...and for sure you will get a long life"
    – islam101
    Jul 22 '12 at 18:22
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I see this as falling under the topic of "Taqdeer".

Everyone has a specific life span, written in the book of Records. So when we ask for longer life, presumably it means, we are asking to modify the original time of death which is written in taqdeer and get a later one. This cannot happen, as Allah knows that in advance, and will have already decided if this is to be granted or not. If it is to be granted, your life will already have been extended, hence you don't get a "longer" life because longer implied, original was modified and now you have more.

You get what is given to you. Some get a short life, others a long life.

This is a matter of perspective, and taqdeer is one of the most difficult concepts to get your head wrapped around. So think about it, and hopefully it makes sense.

If it doesn't, you already have references of hadith and you can be on your merry way to a long and fulfilled life.

The translations are from Quran.com (Shahih International).

The same applies for wealth or anything else. The fact that we don't know our Taqdeer and are required to pray, and ask for these things is different. It does not mean, we sit on our collective bums and say my Taqdeer is already predetermined, I will not do anything. What will happen will happen.

No disaster strikes upon the earth or among yourselves except that it is in a register before We bring it into being - indeed that, for Allah , is easy -

[Sura Hadidh 57:22]

“And you do not will except that Allah wills - Lord of the worlds.”

[al-Takweer 81:29]

“Indeed, all things We created with predestination.”

[al-Qamar 54:49]

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