In the name of Allah the most Merciful Beneficent
Life is a mystery. If we do not believe in religion we could easily get into despair because it becomes difficult to get satisfaction merely believing that we came into this world for a short time only to leave it without having a desire to do so. Then what is the purpose of life?
As believers, it makes sense to delve into Islam to find an answer to our question from the Holy Quran and the traditions (Hadith). Allah (SWT) says in the Holy Quran that every single individual is created with a unique purpose in life.
“Then did you think that We created you uselessly and that to Us you would not be returned?” Quran 23:115
What are our expectations from life – what do we want to achieve in this world? This is an interesting question that covers a vast area of topics which requires several articles to cover it to some degree. Since our focus is Islam, let us leave out the confusing philosophies of questionable moral values and focus on a noble life which provides us the ultimate happiness and peace.
In the chaos of our lives, we can rely only on a handful of things to bring us innermost peace and none of these are our own creation. The serenity of the morning prayers, the brightness of the afternoon prayers and the calmness of the evening prayers are the practices that have been put in place for us by our beloved Prophet sas upon the command of the Almighty Allah(SWT).
Does Islam have the capacity to fulfill all the requirements of a religion in providing happiness and peace we crave? Islam is the magnet we place in ourselves to be drawn towards Allah (SWT). It is a practical religion that teaches us how to lead a life in this world to progress successfully into the next. Allah (SWT) sent the best of His creation, Prophet Mohammad(S) as our role model who showed us how to live. He brought for us a book of guidance, The Luminous Quran, with instructions that completed the religion and revealed to us how we should lead our lives in this world to attain the hereafter.
Through the Holy Quran, Allah (SWT) has conveyed to us the purpose of our lives and the more complex things were demonstrated and explained to us in the form of Hadith by Prophet Mohammad (S), our role model, who lived an exemplary life.
“Verily in the Apostle of God you have a good example for everyone who looks forward (with hope and awe) to God and the Last Day, and remembers God unceasingly.” Quran 33:21
Prophet Mohammad(S) evolved the society at all levels of the strata. He influenced the people from different social milieus – the individual, the family, the nation, the Ummah, the entire humanity, the educated and the uneducated, the rich and the poor, the needy and the wealthy, the weak and the strong, the victorious and the defeated, the ruler and the ruled, everyone in the entire universe had something to learn from the life of the best man who walked the surface of the earth, the chosen one of Allah(SWT). 
Role models in Islam are perfect individuals. Our fourteen Infallibles(AS) are exemplary in their integrity, modesty, generosity, honesty, frugality, wisdom, education, tolerance, compassion, eloquence, were down to earth, thinkers, believers, logical, not prodigal , inspirational, influential, altruistic, not materialistic, nurturing, understanding, sacrificing, forgiving, with impeccable manners, common sense and patience, who put Allah (SWT) first and above all.
The uniqueness of Islam, a truly beautiful religion, lies in its principles, which not only shows the way of leading a peaceful life, it places women in a respectable position. Women, so comfortable in their hijab, representing spiritual modesty set up a filter and a moral check on themselves, placing them in a separate category from regular women. Our role models – Bibi Asia a.s., Bibi Mariam a.s., Bibi Khadija a.s. or Bibi Fatima a.s. – have chiseled the status of women in rock that ladies in veils can accomplish commendable great feats, no less than any man. Men and women are created equal in their respective ways and differ from one another only in their taqwa. 
On the day of Judgment, everyone will be judged based on their taqwa through their jehad and struggles they had to endure. Islam promotes you for your hard work. If you are sincere and get closer to Allah (SWT) and start doing Ibadah(worship,servitude), Allah (SWT) raises your level and helps you do better. You get raised to such standards that you feel better and better and want to perform better and stay closer to Allah (SWT). People in Karbala who sacrificed their lives were ordinary people like us, but they described death to be sweeter than honey. They attain such standard by their closeness to Allah (SWT) and by understanding the truth.
We live in a diverse society. There are interactions of different types and functions between individuals and groups. These render us dependent on others as an individual or a group for social, economic, emotional or moral support. We need a balanced society that provides a safe haven for us to flourish. We are created as social beings and regardless of who we are or what our status in society is, relationships are foremost to our existence as human beings. Every one of us is remarkable and have special mission to accomplish.
Everything termed halal, not just confined to food, is beneficial to us. Halal is based on scientific benefits. Halal food upholds the Islamic law, as defined in the Holy Quran: “These things alone he has forbidden to you: What is already dead, blood, the flesh of swine, what has been offered up to other than Allah.” Quran 6:145. So long as we eat halal, we will continue to keep ourselves healthy and pure. This keeps us perceptive and open to the command of Allah (SWT).
Salat (ritual prayers), the action of prayers, in complete submission to Allah (SWT) is based on our nature. It is the immersion of our self in the will of Allah (SWT). It is the work we need to do to heal ourselves and attain salvation by submitting ourselves to our Creator and handing over ourselves to Him to take complete care of us for we are helpless beings with a multitude of weaknesses. Total submission requires devotion because our ego and desire for separateness constantly wrestles with our need for oneness with Allah (SWT). The search for peace is bigger, deeper and agonizing. 
Life is full of choices. We become who we are from the choices we make. The best choice to make is the one that places us closer to Allah (SWT) no matter how complicated the way. Easy questions may have easy answers and harder questions harder answers. When we seek an answer to the hardest of all questions we may find no answer. It is at this junction that we have to move forward with faith. There is no limit to how far we can go because we can forever move onward.
As we move forward with determination and will power seeking the blessings of Allah (SWT) we often need support from our intimate circle of friends. If we surround ourselves with a strong group of individuals who have full faith and commitment to Allah (SWT) and our own conscience – so perfectly clean that it talks to us, we will always have guidance and keep trudging on the right path. Islam answers the quest, the curiosity, the undying search we have and opens up the knot of jumbled up nerves at the base of our hearts.
Islam is a way of life. If you’re searching for true meaning of life in this abstract world of confusion and experiencing its impact, it is an art to put these emotions into words. It is possible to communicate easily to those who are listening open-mindedly and being perceptive. It has to come from the inner core of the other person to be able to comprehend what you are trying to say. You can use all vocabulary available to you in an effort to make the other individual understand you – yet you will never find the right words or do the right things to express what is in your heart. The only One who can understand is the One who has created you. He understands your every need and every emotion. If you are truthful to yourself and to Him, you have attained your purpose in life and there is nothing in this life that will divert you from the path you have chosen to please Him with your actions.
For my son Syed Husain Abbas Razvi, the best son a mother can have.
1.Prophethood and the Prophet of Islam by Ayatullah Ibrahim Amini
2. Taqwa (Piety) Advice of Ahl al-Bayt by Sayyed Hussain Sheikh al-Islami
3. The Radiance of the Secrets of Prayer by Muhsin Qara’ati