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IslamQA: Wanting to repent but not feeling repentant

There are many moments where I want to ask for God's forgiveness, but I just can't bring myself to. I've heard that one of the conditions to be be forgiven is to really feel the repantance in your heart and even be moved to tears if possible. I'd love to constantly ask for forgiveness but when I do, I don't feel much inside; as though I'm speaking with the tongue and not the heart. Not sure what to make of this or how to solve this. What are your thoughts on this?

Feeling repentance in your heart requires having the necessary mental state for it. In order to feel repentant, you need to feel God’s greatness and power and your utter dependence on Him (rather than merely rationally acknowledging these things). Such appreciation for God requires daily effort. What I recommend to all Muslims who seek to feel spiritual is to perform tahajjud plus Quran-reading before bed every night (see here for the details). Just a week of doing that will probably be sufficient to help you feel spiritually connected with God.

And God knows best.
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