What is the reason for misfortunes and calamities hitting the Muslims and the reason for inauspiciousness according to hadiths?

The Details of the Question
According to the Quranic verse an-Nisa, 79, prophets did not commit sins and yet they were exposed to the biggest of calamities. What is the reason? Moreover, did the Prophet tell in his hadiths for what reasons calamities would occur?
The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

The true calamity and the harmful calamity is the one which harms our faith, our Islam and our high ethics. We must always seek refuge with Allah and beg for His help because of these calamities. (see Tirmidhi, Daawat: 79).

However, calamites which are not connected with religion are not calamities in reality. Some of them are warnings from Allah and some of them are a means of redemption for sins and some others, such as diseases, are blessings from Allah, which serve as purification. (see Bukhari, Iman, 39; Muslim, Birr, 52).

As a matter of fact, glad tidings are given in some narrations:

“Sins drop off a person because of trembling with marsh fever just like fruits drop off a tree because of being shaken.”(Bukhari, Marda: 3, 13, 16; Muslim, Birr: 45).

“A disease cleans off a Muslim’s sins just like fire cleans off the stains of gold and silver.”(Ibn Majah, Tibb 18).

And in another hadith, the Prophet says that Allah sends the most violent and the most severe calamities to the ones whom He loves the most:

“People who experience calamities the most are, firstly, (prophets and then saintly people) based on their levels. One is exposed to calamities and tests according to his faith. If his faith is strong, he experiences more calamities. However, if his faith is weak, he experiences calamities accordingly. By experiencing calamities again and again, a person is purified from all his sins.” (Tirmidhi, Zuhd 57; Ahmad bin Hanbal 1, 172, 174).

“If a human being does not to deserve a place prepared for him in (Heaven) with his deeds, Allah sends a calamity to his body or to his properties or to his family so that he is made to deserve this place through his patience to this calamity.” (Ahmad bin Hanbal V-272)

Therefore, believers can experience calamities and troubles because of many reasons and wisdoms, all of which are for their own good.

1- One of them is as a result of sins we commit.

“Whatever misfortune happens to you, is because of the things your hands have wrought.” (ash-Shurah, 30)

“Whatever evil happens to thee, is from thy (own) soul (your own sins).” (an-Nisa, 79)

“Verily never will Allah change the condition of a people until they change it themselves (with their own souls).” (ar-Ra’d, 11)

2- Calamities, misfortunes and diseases are sent as redemption for sins.

“One who suffers calamities in the worldly life and shows patience goes to the hereafter purified from his sins or with his sins decreased.”

“Each calamity is because of a sin that is to be forgiven.” (Abu Nuaym)

“Each calamity that happens to a believer redeems his sins.”  (Bukhari)

“Calamities and diseases hit a believer until his sins are forgiven.” (Hakim)

3- Calamities hit a believer so that he will deserve a sublime place in Heaven. For this reason, Prophets experienced lots of calamities and misfortunes. 

“The most violent calamities hit prophets and saintly people.”  (Tirmidhi)

“Calamities hit one to allow him to receive blessings.” (Bukhari)

“Misfortunes happen in order to lead a person to a higher degree.” (Abu Nuaym)

“A human being, of whom Allah wills the best, experiences calamities.” (Tabarani)

“If one was always in good health and fineness, these two would be enough to destroy him.”  (I. Asakir)

“Even if a believer hides in a nest of lizard, someone will still find him to give him trouble.” (Bayhaqi)

“World is a dungeon for believers (compared to the blessings of Heaven).”  (Muslim)

“Whoever loves Allah and His Messenger should gird on armor! (be prepared!)” (Bayhaqi)

In short, we can say the most violent calamities hit those whom Allah loves the most. Patience shown to calamities allows saintly people to advance. The Prophet prayed to Allah to give him endurance against calamities which might hit him.

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