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Du’a Invoked By Nabi Yunus (‘A)

Nabi Yunus (‘a) is also referred to as dhu al-nun (the one belonging to fish). Qur’an reveals a very interesting reason for this:

Relating to this in summary here, the interesting account is that Nabi Yunus (‘a) was sent to a community but he soon left them as he felt people would not mend their ways. Nabi Yunus (‘a) was angered at their constant disbelief and argument they were making that he left them to suffer any Adhab (punishment) Allah would send upon them.

Nabi Yunus (‘a) left the town in a ship. There was a huge storm at sea. Nothing could help. We are told in sources that sailors even threw their baggages and personal belongings to offload the ship in the hope they will survive the storm. When nothing helped, they decided to cast a lot to throw someone in the sea hoping that this gesture would help ease the storm. They cast lots and it showed the name of Nabi Yunus (‘a). So they threw him into the sea. Nabi Yunus was swallowed by a large fish. Nabi Yunus (‘a) had realized he had done a mistake by running away from his mission; and repented to Allah, Subhanahu wa Ta’ala, in moving words.

Allah, Subhanahu wa Ta’ala, in His Abundant Mercy not only forgave him but also allowed him to return to his community he had earlier deserted. Nabi Yunus (‘a) repented. The Qur’an reveals the moving Du’a he made:

وَذا النُّونْ إِذْ ذَهَبَ مُغاضِباً فَظَنَّ أَنْ لَنْ نَقْدِرَ عَلَيْهِ فَنادى فِي الظُّلُماتِ أَنْ لا إِلاهَ إلاَّ أَنْتَ سُبْحانَكَ إِنِّي كُنْتُ مِنَ الظَّالِمينَ

“…and remember dhu al-nun, when he departed in wrath, he imagined we were not going to test him further. But he cried through the depths of darkness: There is no ilah [deity] but You. Glory to You. I was indeed wrong.” (21:87).

فَاسْتَجَبْنا لَهُ وَنَجَّيْناهُ مِنَ الغَمِّ وَكذلكَ نُنْجي المُؤْمِنينَ

“So We listened to him and delivered him from distress. And thus do We deliver those who have faith.” (21:88). 1

  • 1. This is the wonderful Du’a we also recite in the first Raka’at of Salat al-Ghufaylah between our Maghrib and ‘Isha Salat. There is a hadith about the great virtues of this Du’a to be recited in difficulties.