قَدْ خَلَقْنَا الْإِنسَانَ فِي كَبَدٍ
la qad khalaqna al insana fee kabad
We have certainly created man into hardship.
[Quran Surah Balad 90:4]
kabad – intense, laboursome, difficult, toil which is overwhelming you from all sides. An exhausting / endless / laboursome struggle.
The human has been created in intense struggle.
There are 2 paths discussed in this surah;
– Allah’s path.
– a path which distances from Allah.
Whatever path you choose – will have many different struggles. However, one struggle will bring Allah’s Mercy and reward, and the other path will lead to Allah’s anger and punishment.
People runaway from Allah’s commands out of fear that they will face alot of hardship. But they don’t realise – even if they turned away from the guidance – they would still face hardship and stress by other obstacles in life.
يُرِيدُ اللَّهُ أَن يُخَفِّفَ عَنكُمْ ۚ وَخُلِقَ الْإِنسَانُ ضَعِيفًا
Allah wishes to lighten (the burden) for you; and man was created weak.[Nisa 4:28]
Allah’s commands’ bring ease / comfort and relaxation for you.
kabad – the middle of the day (the hardest / hottest part of the day for the ‘arabs).
It also means to be immersed in the middle of a Sand Dune, since it is really hard to walk out of that if you are stuck there.
Kibd – when the Liver gets injured. There is alot of pain and hardship.
Some sahaba (companions of Prophet Muhammad) had the view that Kabad is the different stages of life;
When you come out of the womb (when you are born) – there is hardship.
When you grow up – you struggle and go through the different stages of learning how to eat, walk, talk, etc.
Each stage of life brings a form of hardship, and we continue to face different struggles in life till death.
Mufti Muhammad Shafee’: Humans are never free from worry. The richest one is worried about their relationship with their family members, and it might not be worrying to you – but it is extremely worrying to them.
The worries in the world are contrasting and scaled in many ways. Some people might be worried that they will be tortured in the next few minutes like many Muslims in the secret prisons, whereas another worries about why their carpet and curtains don’t match.
Each person has their own form of enormous struggle in life. So why not strive for the greatest of good deeds which hold the greatest rewards? Because aren’t you going to struggle – no matter what – anyway?