وَاذْكُر رَّبَّكَ إِذَا نَسِيتَ وَقُلْ عَسَىٰ أَن يَهْدِيَنِ رَبِّي لِأَقْرَبَ مِنْ هَـٰذَا رَشَدًا
And remember and mention your Lord (straightaway) should you forget (to do so when expressing an intention for the future). And say: “I hope that my Lord will guide me to what is nearer to right conduct than this (forgetfulness of mine).” (Al-Kahf 18:24)
If what is meant by “guiding” in the verse is the dominance of the Religion over people’s souls and its acceptance by consciences as a whole, this occurred with respect to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. For instance, the Jews had to stay and wander in the Tih Desert for many years to acquire the necessary spiritual maturity in order to enter the “Promised Land.” Christianity was kept under strict control and pressure for three centuries after its rise, but then it received widespread acceptance. As for Islam, it had full acceptance in the short time frame of twenty-three years. The verse above must have pointed to this fact as a miracle of giving news of the Unseen.
The command of “remember and mention your Lord (straightaway) should you forget (to do so)” admonishes us to turn to God once more, either when we forget to say “inshā’llah” (If God wills) in the moment we utter our intention or decision to do something or whenever we simply become oblivious of Him. We must turn to Him as stated in the verse,
Our Lord, take us not to task if we forget or make a mistake. (Al-Baqarah 2:286)
The command also reminds us that the atonement for one’s forgetting and heedlessness is to remember and mention God.
Through remembrance and mention of God and through being charged with metaphysical intensity or tension like the Ashābu’l-Kahf, the blessing of addressing and winning consciences and the public conscious-ness will appear in a more direct way. This will bring achievement after achievement, as indicated at the end of the verse.