The ‘Undo’ Button


Sayyiduna Abu Bakr Siddeeq (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) reports that he heard Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) mention, “There is no slave (of Allah Ta‘ala) who commits any sin (whether major or minor), and thereafter performs wudhu, stands and performs two rakaats of salaah, and then repents to Allah Ta‘ala, except that Allah Ta‘ala will forgive him.” (Sunan Abu Dawood #1521)

In the ‘olden days’, when the typewriter was in vogue, if a person made a typing mistake, there was no way to undo it. Hence, to correct the mistake, the entire document would have to be retyped. Thereafter, correction fluid (Tipp-ex) was invented, making life much easier for typists around the world. Finally, the time came when word processing shifted to computers. Now, it is easier than ever to ‘undo’ a mistake by simply pressing the ‘undo’ button.

A Muslim, in the course of his life, will undoubtedly err and fall into sin from time to time. However, such is the mercy of Allah Ta‘ala that He has given us an ‘undo’ button which can easily and instantly erase the sin from our book of deeds. This ‘undo’ button is known as taubah and istighfaar.

In the hadeeth above, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) has taught us that when making taubah and istighfaar, then we should try to first make wudhu and perform two rakaats of salaah. These two rakaats are generally referred to as ‘Salaatut Taubah’, and performing these two rakaats is from the aadaab (etiquettes) of taubah and istighfaar.

The Muhadditheen explain that by a person making wudhu and performing these two rakaats, he is showing greater importance to the taubah. In other words, he is going the extra mile and making an extra effort to display his remorse and regret over his sins. (Bazlul Majhood) It is for this reason that performing Salaatut Taubah, when repenting for one’s sins, assists in one drawing the mercy and forgiveness of Allah Ta‘ala.

May Allah Ta‘ala forgive all our sins, place the disgust for evil in our hearts and protect us from falling into haraam, aameen.