Thursday, 24 November 2011

The Light of Guidance


The Light of Guidance

Ahmad ibn ‘Abd al-Rahmaan al-Swiyaan

(Al-Bayaan magazine, issue # 152, Rabee’ al-Aakhir 1421, pp. 66-67)


I was coming back from a long journey, and Allaah decreed that my seat in the airplane should be beside a group of carefree young men whose loud laughter and voices were too much, and the air was filled with clouds of smoke from their cigarettes. By the wisdom of Allaah, the plane was completely full and I could not change my seat.

I tried to escape from the problem by sleeping, but it was impossible… When I got fed up of their noise, I took out my Mus-haf (copy of the Qur’aan), and started to read what I could of the Qur’aan in a soft voice. Soon after that these young men started to quieten down. Some of them started to read newspapers, and some of them fell asleep.

Suddenly one of them said in a loud voice, even though he was sitting right next to me, “Enough! Enough!”

I thought that I had disturbed him because my voice was too loud, so I apologized to him and carried on reading in a whisper that only I could hear. I saw him holding his head in his hands, then fidgeting in his seat, moving a lot. Then he raised his head and said to me angrily, “Please, stop it, I can’t stand it!!”

Then he got up from his seat and went away for a while, then he came back, greeted me with salaams, and apologized. He fell silent, and I did not know what was going on. But after a while he turned to me with his eyes full of tears and said to me in a whisper, "For three years or more I have not put my forehead on the ground, and I have not read even one aayah!

For a whole month I have been on this trip, and there is no evil action that I did not indulge in. Then I saw you reading Qur’aan, and my world turned black and my heart was filled with despair. I felt as if someone was strangling me… I felt every aayah that you read coming down on my body like a whip.

I said to myself, for how long will this negligence go on? Where will this path lead you? What will happen after all this foolish play? Then I went to the washroom, do you know why?

I had the strong urge to weep, and I could not find anywhere else to hide from the people’s sight!”

I spoke to him in general terms about tawbah (repentance) and turning back to Allaah, then he fell silent.

When the plane landed, he stopped me, and it seemed that he wanted to keep away from his companions. He asked me, with a serious expression on his face, “Do you think that Allaah will accept my repentance?” I said, “If you are sincere and serious in your repentance, then Allaah will forgive all your sins.”

He said, “But I have done terrible things, very terrible.”

I said, “Have you not heard what Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

‘Say: O ‘Ibaadi (My slaves) who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allaah, verily, Allaah forgives all sins. Truly, He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful’ [al-Zumar 39:53]?”

I saw him smiling with joy, with his eyes filled with tears, then he bade me farewell and left. Subhaan Allaah al-‘Azeem!

No matter how great a man's evil and sin, in his heart there is a seed of goodness. If only we can reach it and make it grow, it will bear fruit, insha'Allaah.

This seed of goodness is always fighting in man's heart, even when it is covered by layers of whims and desires. When Allaah wills good for His slave, He causes the light of guidance to shine in his heart and guides him to the path of those who are guided. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And whomsoever Allaah wills to guide, He opens his breast to Islam; and whomsoever He wills to send astray, He makes his breast closed and constricted, as if he is climbing up to the sky” [al-An’aam 6:125]

Suicide - It's Not An Escape!


In a society that prides itself for freedom and liberty to attain maximum happiness, suicide ought to be the furthest from the mind?  Yet it is not an uncommon practice and may be someone who is close to you and opens up to you and you may be the only person who can help.  Suicide, resorted to in times of crisis as an end to those worries, is not only prohibited in Islam but it is also not an escape.  This article illustrates how Islam provides an alternative that is worth living for!


All praise and gratitude is to Allah – our Creator, Provider and the Maintainer of all the worlds.

In Allah’s care…
He brought together the sperm and the ovum from deep within two separate individuals, lodged the fertilized egg safely and prepared the uterus for the creation of a life – helpless and dependent on its Creator from the day of conception and beyond its birth, the vibrant youth, prudent adulthood up to its death at a senile old age and beyond to another life – its real home.  Not a day passes except that the same Creator sustains this life – and the six billion others like it on the planet – with attention to the most minute of its needs.  It breathes effortlessly without even noticing the complex art and perfection in the organs that enable it. 

Why despair then…
With such care and attention for detail in each individual, is it then warranted to despair of the help of the most Merciful?

Along the same lines we find these verses in the Quran, (their translation) “Has there not been over man a period of time, when he was not a thing worth mentioning?  Verily, We have created man from a drop of mixed fluid (of man and woman) in order to try him so We made him a hearer and seer.  Verily, We showed him the way (gave him guidance in all matters), whether he be grateful or ungrateful (lit. kafoor i.e. who conceals and denies the favours or signs of Allah).  [Surah Insan 76:1-3]

For us is to worship and the provision is from Him…
He created us with such care and attention for a noble purpose and assured us that He will sustain and look after each and every need.  He informs in the Quran, (its translation) “I did not create the Jinn or the human except that they worship me; I do not want any provision from them (neither for themselves nor for any creatures) nor do I seek that they should feed Me (i.e. provide for whom I provide). Verily, Allah He is the Provider (of all), possessor of Power, the Most Strong.”  [Surah Dhariyat 51:56-58]

Why the trials and hardship…
Thus Allah took the responsibility of providing for and looking after all affairs of each and every individual and reassured He is the One fully capable of that.  Our concern is not to be anxious even in the most trying circumstance for Allah promised to provide a way out; rather our concern is to worship Him by living a life of obedience to Him and excellence in every walk of life.  Any hardship faced is no more than a trial to prove that our only concern is the approval of our actions by Allah before anyone else in the community and even before our own pleasure.  Allah promised in the Quran, “Alif, Lam, Mim, do people think that they will be left alone on (merely) saying: ‘We believe,’ and not be tested (in their claims)?  We have indeed tested those who were before them; and Allah will certainly make it known those who were truthful and He will certainly make known the liars.”  [Surah Ankabut 29:1-2]   

Thus suicide forbidden in Quran and hadith…
Given that Allah promised to undertake the sustenance and any delay thereafter or withholding of any of its needs being merely for a trial, then there is no room for a person to take away the life that Allah has created for an important purpose and meticulously sustaining it each second for that purpose.  He prohibited the destroying of ones life in any manner as understood by the general meaning of the wording of this verse, “And do not throw (yourselves) with your own hands to destruction; but work (deeds of) excellence for verily Allah loves the people of excellence.”  [Surah Baqarah 2:195]   Thus we are ordered to not destroy ourselves rather to direct the mind and energies to doing good deeds that please Allah.  In another verse, “And do not kill yourselves. Surely, Allaah is Most merciful to you.”  [Surah Nisaa 4:29]

In fact the taking of even one life is regarded as the taking of the life of the whole of mankind, “Whoever kills a soul – unless for another soul or for corruption (vice and mischief spread) in the land – it is as if he had slain the whole of mankind.  And whoever saves one – it is as if he had saved the whole of mankind.” [Surah Ma’idah 5:32]  The noun, soul (nafs) in the verse is without the definite particle. In Arabic, an indefinite noun in a conditional clause gives the meaning of generality and comprehensiveness.  Thus, the verse is not only concerning the taking of a soul of another person but even ones own life for both are souls created and entrusted to us by Allah.  This is not only prohibited but strongly condemned as though he killed the whole of mankind.

The Messenger of Allah (May the peace and blessings be on him) also prohibited it as learnt from the following hadith.  "Whoever throws himself down from a mountain and kills himself, he will be in the Fire of Hell throwing himself down for ever and ever. Whoever drinks poison and kills himself will have the poison in his hand, drinking it in the Fire of Hell for ever and ever. Whoever kills himself with a piece of iron (i.e. a weapon) will have that piece of iron in his hand, stabbing himself in the stomach with it in the Fire of Hell forever and ever." (Compiled in Sahih Bukhari).

The pain of suicide is for ever…
A person, who commits suicide, does so believing it an escape from his crisis so he ends his life willing to bear a moment of pain and may throw himself of a cliff.  Yet this hadith shows that he actually brings upon himself that pain not just momentarily but again and again in Hell-fire.

But from His mercy He may forgive suicide – so why not stay alive in His mercy…
However, from the mercy of Allah, the Exalted, He may forgive any sin committed by a person no matter how grave or He may punish in this life or in Hell-fire, except for Shirk.  Associating partners to Allah (Shirk) in divinity and Lordship is the only sin that Allah does not forgive.  The one doing shirk may seek forgiveness from the partner he claims to Allah in divinity but he is seeking forgiveness from someone who doesn’t have the authority to forgive!  This principle of forgiveness is established clearly in the Quran, “Verily Allah does not forgive that you set up partners with Him but He forgives anything else for whoever He wishes.”  [Surah Nisaa 4:48] 

A person who is confident of the mercy of Allah in forgiving him for committing suicide, shouldn’t he have the same confidence that if he doesn’t commit suicide, Allah from His mercy and care will alleviate his hardship and distress?  If it takes time, it is no more than a temporary trial.

A day’s worth for a Muslim…
An extra day alive is that much longer to work good deeds to distance oneself from the eternal torment of Hell-fire and a golden opportunity to win a better place in Paradise.  It is for deserving of this mercy of Allah and a Paradise which no eye has ever seen, nor any ear has ever heard nor conceived by any mind, it is for this a Muslim is directed to strive every moment he is alive by the favour of Allah.  A Believer capitalizes on each breath Allah allows him – only the ignorant would throw away such a bargain!  Allah says (translated it means), “And whoever does good equal to the weight of an atom (or a small ant) will see it (on the Day of Resurrection to be rewarded) and whoever does mischief equal to the weight of an atom shall see it.”  [Surah Zalzalah 99:7-8]00

Reassurances in Quran  and a purpose to live…
Thus a person contemplating suicide finds reassurance in the Quran and purpose for life.  He finds an explanation for ease or hardship.  He realizes that every hardship expiates for his sins and elevates his rank in Paradise.  He thus finds internal peace and pleasure even in external hardship and suffering and strives to acquire or lose the eternal comfort in the Hereafter.  The feelings of depression, anxiety, hopelessness and self-loathing diminish as a Believer contemplates on the message of the Quran, reflects on life and patterns the life according to its wise injunctions.  Initially, this achievement may be for moments only but with time and following the guidance of the Quran it may become a constant state.

Mixing with people…
The effectiveness of this process can be enhanced tremendously by interaction with other people, righteous Muslims and especially the people with Islamic knowledge and counselors.  As negative feelings develop and pessimism sets in, they can draw attention to vital realities of life and the Hereafter as well as be the encouraging spirit.  Not everyone will be sensitive nor can the person open up to just anyone, however it is good to at least with some who is understanding and able to help.  As for those who make the person feel worthless for reasons that are insignificant in Allah’s sight, not interacting with them is understandable.

Self-worth… with people…and with Allah…
No matter how insignificant a person is in the eyes of his peers, he is important enough in the sight of Allah that He created him with such care from even before birth.  The society judges a person for wealth, power, success in career, physical attraction and other worldly traits.  But a person who has none of this or has lost everything may still be the dearest to Allah, the angels and the believers who are rightly guided!  In Islam, the worth of an individual is solely based on taqwa – God consciousness that produces righteousness and piety.  A peasant or a bankrupt businessman may be superior to a CEO of the most successful organization on earth – if he excels in taqwa!  Allah makes this point clear in the Quran, (its translation reads) “O mankind, We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honourable of you with Allah is that (believer) who has the most taqwa (piety).  Verily, Allah is All-Knowing, All-aware.”  [Surah Hujurat 49:13]

Even at times of weakness, step at a time…
Although reassured that in the sight of Allah the worthiness of an individual is measured only by taqwa, a person may still be weary - especially at times of high stress, depression and anxiety - of him being able to attain this taqwa and self-worth.

Yet the Quran inspires and motivates even the weakest of the Believers to achieve the highest success.  Allah declares in the Quran reassuringly, “Whoever works righteousness – whether male or female – while he (or she) is a Believer, verily, to him We will give a good life (in this life with contentment etc), and certainly We shall give them a reward (in the eternal Hereafter) according to the best of what they used to do.”  [Surah Nahl 16:97]  Thus when overwhelmed by stress and concerns, doing noble and pious deeds may seem far, but a believer finds reassurance that he or she will be rewarded by the best acts he does at any time in his life and momentary lapses may well be forgiven by Allah the Oft-Forgiving, Merciful. 

And at that moment of trauma when little seems possible, a believer is reminded in the Quran, “And whoever does good equal to the weight of an atom (or a small ant) will see it (on the Day of Resurrection to be rewarded) and whoever does mischief equal to the weight of an atom shall see it.”  [Surah Zalzalah 99:7-8]  So instead of despair, a believer is found unconcerned of the society’s estimation of him or of a major worldly loss, there is neither grief over what destroyed the past nor anxiety over what the future holds, rather the only concern is to do even an atoms weight of good at that difficult moment – even if it is merely persevering patiently till a better moment later on when big acts of piety can be performed because eventually the reward from Allah, the most Merciful, is in accordance to the best actions performed by the person.  In fact patiently persevering in such a difficult moment may rank as the best of deeds!

Even the worst moment can actually become the best…
In fact not a moment passes by in the life of a Muslim even if a catastrophe befalls him, except that it can be a success and a bonus for the Believer if he bears it patiently!  Even while overwhelmed by grief, anxieties and a desire to finish it all with suicide, merely holding on till it passes away even without doing any other good deed in that state can actually turn that depressing moment into one of triumph and sure success so why resort to suicide then?  The Messenger of Allah (may the peace and blessings be on him) said, “The case of a believer is amazing!  Every affair of his is good for him, and this is not for anyone except a believer: if he experiences something pleasant, he is grateful to Allah and that is good for him; and if he comes across some adversity, he is patiently persevering (i.e. has sabr) and that too is good for him!” [Compiled in Sahih Muslim]

In fact we learn from another hadith that, “When Allah wants well for a slave of His, He hastens the punishment in this world (rather than the severe and eternal Hereafter).  And when Allah wants for His slave bad, He withholds from him (the punishment for) his sin until he takes it from him on the Day of Resurrection.”  [An authentic hadith collected by Tirmidhi]  Thus the one suffering hardship may actually be more beloved to Allah than one who is being left and not punished despite sins and impiety.   The Prophet informed, “Nothing strikes a Muslim – no fatigue, illness, worry, grief, hurt nor sorrow; not even a prick of a thorn – except that Allah wipes off due to it some of his sins.” [Collected in Sahih of Bukhari & Muslim]

Even if his world seems to be falling apart…
With a sense of worth for even the smallest good deeds, a believer bears the most trying of hardships reassured that as the Messenger of Allah said, “Verily, the greatness of the reward is with the greatness (or severity) of the trial.  Verily if Allah loves a people He tries them (with trials).”  [An authentic hadith collected by Tirmidhi]

Thus, what may seem to another as his world falling apart in front of his eyes and nothing to live for, a Believer sees in the same an equally great world of unending bliss and comfort being prepared for him or her in Paradise so long as he bears it with patience for although this life is for being tried repetitively, “Verily along with every difficulty is relief (that comes thereafter).”  [Surah Inshirah 94:6] 

The relief is near – a guarantee from Allah…
If the relief doesn’t come immediately, it’s not far.  This, Allah guarantees, “Or did you think that you will enter Paradise without such (trials) that came to those who passed away before you?  They were afflicted with severe poverty and ailments and were so shaken that even the Messenger and those who believed along with him said, ‘When will come the help of Allah?’  Yes!  Certainly, the help of Allah is near!”  [Surah Baqarah 2:214].

So why then would anyone want to commit suicide!!
It is not surprising then, with such compelling reasons to live for and reassurances of help, Allah warned of some of the most severe punishments for the one who ends his own life – a life that in fact belongs to Allah!  As the above mentioned hadith of the punishment of the one who committed suicide shows, the self-infliction of the same fatal blow repeatedly in hell-fire again and again, a person who commits suicide hasn’t found an escape from his worries; in fact, it’s just the beginning.

Answered by Sheikh Aslam Hussain, graduate of Madinah University in Shariah. His audio, articles and course notes can be found at

The Desire For The Hereafter


Adopted from Imam Ibn ul-Qayyim’s
"Al-Fawa’id" by Abu Aasiya

The desire for the Hereafter is not complete without renouncing this world, and
renouncement from this world is not achieved except after:

a) Looking at this world, and how quickly it passes away and reaches its end,
its deficiencies, decline, vileness; the distress of competing for it, and the
way it spoils and causes misery. Also, its ephemerality and discontinuation
comes with misery and regrets. The one who seeks this world benefits only by
having sadness before acquiring it, worries when he is enjoying it, and grief
after its passing away.

b) Knowing with surety that the Hereafter is going to come and its arrival is
certain. The eternality, endlessness, and nobility of the good and pleasing
things in it, and the difference between what is there and what is here. It is
as He said:

Although the life to come is better and more enduring.” (88: 17)

For over there are complete, unending pleasures, and over here are insufficient,
ephemeral, and vanishing fancies.

After completely understands these two aspects the intellect is required to make
its preference and renounce what it should renounce.

So anyone who is naturally disposed to leave the enjoyment of this world and the
present pleasures for the pleasures that are hidden and yet to come in the
Hereafter will not do so unless the excellence of the next life over this one is
clear to him, and has a strong desire to achieve the superior instead of the

When he prefers the transient and the inadequate it is either because he does
not understand what is better for him or because he does not have the desire to
obtain the best.

Either one of them shows weakness of Eemaan, intellect, and insight. This is
because the one who desires this world and prefers it is either because he
believes that what is there is nobler, better, and more enduring, or he does

If he does not believe this, he would loose his Eemaan right away. On the other
hand, if he believes this but does not prefer it, then he has weak intellect and
will power. So, preferring this life over the next one could either be from
corrupted Eemaan or imperfect intellect.

This is the reason why the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his Companions put
this world behind their backs, turned their hearts away from it, and abandoned
it. They did not befriend it, instead they renounced it. They did not incline
towards it. They considered it to be a prison, not Paradise! They renounced it
as it ought to have been renounced. Had they wished, they could have had
anything they liked and reached anything they desired because the key of its
treasures were presented to them, but they refused to accept them.

They did not exchange their share of the Hereafter with her. They knew that it
was a corridor and a passage way, not a residence of permanence and stability.
They understood fully well that it is a transit station, not a pleasure house.
They took it for tis real worth - a summer cloud that shall disperse soon.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) is reported to have said in authentic

What am I in this world except for like a person who is traveling and
stopped under the shade of the tree to rest for a few moments and then continues
with his traveling

What is this world compared to the Hereafter except like when one of you
puts his finger in the sea, so he sees what he takes out (of the sea with his
wet finger).

Our Lord, the Creator of this world, draws a parable from our own lifes to
illustrate the real value of this world:

The parable of the life of this world is but that of rain which We send down
from the sky, and which is absorbed by the plants of the earth whereof men and
animals draw nourishment, until - when the earth is clad with its adornments and
is beautified, and they who dwell on it believe that they have all the powers of
disposal over it - there comes down upon it Our judgment, by night or by day,
and We cause it to become (like) a field mown down, as if it had not flourished

And (know that) Allah invites (man) unto the abode of peace, and guides whom He
wills onto a Straight Way.
” (10: 24, 25)

So Allah, our Lord, informs us about the ignobility of this life and ascetism
from it, and tells us about the home of peace and invites us to it.

In another passage Allah says:

And propound unto them the parable of the life of this world: (it is) like
the water which We send down from the skies, and which is absorbed by the plants
of the earth: but (in time) they turn into dry stubble which the winds blow
freely about.

And it is Allah (alone) who determines all things.

Wealth and children are an adornment of this world’s life: but good deeds, the
fruit whereof endures forever, are of far greater merit in your Sustainer's
sight, and a far better source of hope.
” (18: 45, 46)

and they rejoice in the life of the world, whereas the life of this world
as compared with the Hereafter is but a brief passing enjoyment.
” (14: 26)

He has threatened with the greatest threat the one who is pleased with the life
of this world, is satisfied with it, is ignorant of His aayat, and is not
hopeful of meeting Him:

Verily, those who hope not for their meeting with us, but are pleased and
satisfied with the life of the present world, and those who are heedless of Our
aayat, those, their abode will be the Fire, because of what they used to earn.

(10:7, 8)

O you who believe, what is the mater with you, and when you are asked to
march forth in the Cause of Allah you cling heavily to the earth? Are you
pleased with the life of this world rather than the Hereafter? But little is the
enjoyment of the life of this world as compared with the Hereafter.
” (9: 38)

Meaning that the obedience of Allah and seeking the Hereafter becomes a burden
on the one who desires this life and is pleased with it.

It is enough to renounce this life by the saying of Allah (in translation):

Tell Me, if We do let them enjoy for years, and afterwards come to them that
(punishment) which they had been promised! All that which they used to enjoy
shall not avail them.
” (26: 207)

And on the day when He shall gather them together, (it will be) as if they
had not stayed but an hour of a day. They shall recognize each other.
” (10:

On the Day when they shall see that (torment) with which they are promised
(it will be) as if they had not stayed more than an hour in a single day. But
shall any be destroyed except people who are disobedient
.” (46: 35)

The day they see it, (it will be) as if they had not tarried (in this world)
except an afternoon or a morning.
” (80: 46)

And on the day that the Hour is established, the disbelievers will swear
that they stayed not but an hour
.” (30: 55)

He will say: ‘What number of years did you stay on earth?’

They will say: ‘We stayed a day or part of a day. Ask of those who keep

He (Allah) will say: “You stayed not but a little,- if you had only known!’

(23: 112-114)

The day when the Trumpet will be blown: that Day the disbelievers will be
blue eyed with dark faces. In whispers will they speak to each other (saying):
‘You stayed no longer than ten (days).’
” (23: 20)

Creation is in Need of Allah


Imam Ibn ul Qayyim al Jawziyyah



Man always looks for what benefits him and what protects him from harm. However, to accomplish this, man must be able to realize what is harmful. He must then know whom he should need, trust, and love so that he can attain what is beneficial as well as to feel good about his choice. He also must know the proper and good approach that would make him achieve this goal. This latter condition requires that man:

a) Know about harm

b) What ways can be used to drive harm away

Certainly, man can have no better guidance than that which comes from the One Who had perfected everything, and the One who Has no deficiency in Himself and in His Attributes. The One Who is Ever-Living and Who does not die. There can be no One better than the One Who Has no need for anything; the One Who is rich; the Giver; the One who, after all, controls man's soul. Man is so poor to Him. He is Allah, the True and only God. Man can bring harm to himself if he seeks other than Allah for help. Allah is the One Who can help man drive away any harm for it cannot occur without His Will and His Power.

Allah (SW) sent down His Books and chose His Messengers to guide man to:

a) Know His Lord as He (SW) had explained about Himself, and

b) Seek Him Alone while living in accordance with His plan

Knowing Allah's Names and Attributes liberates man from worshiping any form of creation because creation is weak and is in need of The Creator, Allah. The knowledge about Allah leads man to know that he is created to live according to Allah's way as revealed to the last Messenger Muhammad (sallaallaahu `alaihi wa sallam). This Revelation contains a complete code of life. Everything that is beneficial or harmful is established so that man can center his life around this Revelation. If man commits wrong and knows that Allah is Oft-Forgiving he would turn to Him and to Him alone seeking His forgiveness: "Know, therefore, that there is no God Who deserves to be worshiped except Allah; and ask forgiveness for your sins." (Qur'an, 47:19)

It is wrong to think or believe that Allah created other 'gods' besides Him so that man turns to them for help; loves them or fear them, etc. He is the same God of all nations. He does not order that people should make of stars, sun, fire, Jesus, Moses, etc. gods besides Him. He (Most Exalted) cannot be 'contradictory'. He has one way (religion) that calls man to surrender his will only to Him. He (SW) warned that if man (even Muhammad sallaallaahu `alaihi wa sallam) would take partners with Him, then his work will fail and will be among losers:

"And verily, it had been revealed to you (O Muhammad) as has been revealed to those before you. If you join others in worship with Allah (then) surely (all) your deeds will be in vain and you will certainly be among the losers. Nay! But worship Allah and be among grateful." (Qur'an, 39:65-66)

Let us know what Muhammad (sallaallaahu `alaihi wa sallam), the man-Prophet, who knew Allah best, used to say:

"O Allah, I seek refuge in You for Your Pleasure and against Your Wrath,and in Your Forgiveness and against Your Punishment and in You from You, I cannot Praise You as You can Praise Yourself." (Muslim, Abu Dawoud, at-Tirmidhi, ibn Majah)

"I have surrendered myself to You, I have directed my face to You, I have entrusted my affairs to You, I have compelled my back to refuge in You, in want and in fright of You, there is no resort nor survival from You except (in turning) to You. I have faith in Your book (i.e. the Qur'an) which You brought down and in the Prophet (Muhammad) you have sent." (Al-Bukhari, Muslim)

When we read in the Qur'an that:

"Whatever of Mercy (i.e. of good), Allah may grant to mankind, none can withhold it, and whatever He may withhold, none can grant it thereafter. And He is the All-Mighty, the All-Wise." (Qur'an, 35:2)

And when we read that:

"If Allah touches you with hurt, there is none can remove it but He; and if He intends any good for you, there is none who can repel His favor which He causes it to reach whomsoever of His slaves He will, and He is the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful." (Qur'an, 10:117)

We should be motivated to return to Him Alone at times of ease and at times of hardship.

And when we read that:

"If Allah helps you none can overcome you, and if He forsakes you, who is there, after Him, that can help you. And in Allah (alone) let believers put their trust." (Qur'an, 3:160)

The Qur'an, therefore, leads man to a true liberation from any false attachment. It brings peace to the heart. It helps the believer against hypocrisy and all forms of dishonesty. Imagine, for example, a believer facing a problem at work. He sees wrong and faces unlawful practices. He does not fear rejecting what is wrong. He knows that the job is only a means to gain his sustenance. While he may be unable to correct what is wrong, he knows well that Allah is the One Who provides. If he leaves his job for the sake of Allah, Allah will give him a better one. Allah (SW) said:

"And whosoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him. He will make a way for him to get out (from) every (difficulty), and He will provide him from (sources) he could never imagine." (Qur'an, 65:2-3)

The above texts, necessitates that man must depend upon Allah (SW) asking Him Alone for assistance. It also requires that man must love Allah and worship Him Alone to gain His pleasure and His help. Is it not true that the people who consider this life as the "Final Goal" end up worshiping many things in it? You see them so careful about "having it all". They torture themselves: pain, difficulty, constant worry, keeping their hands in the banks for loan after loan to keep up with the "demands of development". They are under the constant threat of fore-closure. They constantly see poverty in front of their eyes. The Prophet (sallaallaahu `alaihi wa sallam) said:

"Allah says: Son of Adam: Fill your time with My worship and I will fill your heart with richness, and end off your poverty. But if you donot, I would make your hands fully busy (i.e. in worldly affairs) and I would not end off your poverty." (At-Tirmidhi said that it is a good hadeeth)

Our purpose of existence on earth is more meaningful than being slaves to worldly gains. There can be no meaningful life better than that prescribed by our Creator Allah. Every act done according to Allah's way is an act of worship. Man is the beneficiary and Allah is in no need:

"O mankind! It is you who stand in need of Allah, but Allah is Rich (Free of all wants and needs), Worthy of All Praise." (Qur'an, 35:15)

Written by Dr. Saleh as-Saleh based on Ighathat ul Lahfan (1/6-42) of Ibn ul Qayyim


The Purification of the Soul - SINCERITY


Compiled from the works of Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali, Ibn Al-Qayyim

al-Jawziyya, and Abu Hamid al-Ghazali.




Sincerity is the freeing of one's intentions from all

impurities in order to come nearer to Allah. It is to

ensure that the intentions behind all acts of worship and

obedience to Allah are exclusively for His pleasure. It is the

perpetual contemplation of the Creator, to the extent that one

forgets the creation.

Sincerity is a condition for Allah's acceptance of good

deeds performed in accordance with the sunnah of the

Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. Allah has

commanded this in the Qur'an:

"And they have been commanded to worship only

Allah, being sincere towards Him in their deen

and true. (98:5)"

Abu Umama has related that a man once came to the

Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and

said, "What of a man who joined us in the fighting, his

intention being for fame and booty?" The Prophet said, "He

recieves nothing." The man repeated the question three times and

each time the Prophet said, "He receives nothing". Then he said,

"Allah only accepts actions that are intended purely for His


Abu Sa'id al-Khudri related that the Prophet (saw) said

in his khutba during the farewell pilgrimage, "Allah

will bless whoever hears these words and whoever understands

them, for it may be that those who pass on this knowledge are

not those who will understand it the best. There are three

things concerning which the heart of a believer should feel no

enmity or malice: devoting one's actions to Allah, giving

counsel to the Imams of the Muslims, and being loyal to the


What is meant here is that these three things strengthen

the heart, and whoever distinguishes himself in them

will have a heart purified from all manner of deceit, corruption

and evil.

A servant can only free himself from shaytan through

sincere devotion, for Allah tells us in the Quran that

Iblis said to Him:

"Except those of Your servants who are sincere.


It has been related that a rigtheous man used to say, "O

self, be devout and you will be pure." When any wordly

fortune, in which the self finds comfort and towards which the

heart inclines, intrudes upon our worship, then it impairs the

purity of our efforts and ruins our sincerity. Man is

preoccupied with his good fortune and immersed in his desires

and appetites; rarely are his actions or acts of worship free of

temporary objectives and desires of this kind. For this reason

it has been said that whoever secures a single moment of pure

devotion to Allah in his life will survive, for devotion is rare

and precious, and cleansing the heart of its impurities is an

exacting undertaking.

In fact, devotion is the purifying of the heart from all

impurities, whether few or many, so that the intention of

drawing nearer to Allah is freed from all other motives, except

that of seeking His pleasure. This can only come from a lover

of Allah, who is so absorbed in contemplation of the next world

that there remains in his heart no place for the love of this

world. Such a person must be devote and pure in all his actions,

even in eating, drinking and answering the calls of nature.

With rare exceptions, anyone who is not like this will find the

door of devotion closed in his face.

The everyday actions of a person who is overwhelmed by

his or her love for Allah and the akhira are

characterised by his love and they are, in fact, pure devotion.

In the same way, anyone whose soul is overwhelmed by love for

and preoccupation with this world, or status and authority, will

be so overwhelmed by these things that no act of worship, be it

prayer or fasting, will be acceptable, except in very rare


The remedy for love of this world is to break the

worldly desires of the self, ending its greed for this

world and purifying it in preparation for the next world. This

will then become the state of the heart and sincere devotion

will become easier to attain. There are a great many actions

where a man acts, thinking they are purely intended for Allah's

pleasure, but he is deluded, for he fails to see the defects in


It has been related that a man was used to praying in

the first row in the mosque. One day he was late for the

prayer, so he prayed in the second row. Feeling embarrassment

when people saw him in the second row, he realised that the

pleasure and satisfaction of the heart that he used to gain from

praying in the first row were due to his seeing people seeing

him there and admiring him for it. This is a subtle and

intangible condition and actions are rarely safe from it. Apart

from those whom Allah has assisted, few are aware of such

delicate matters. Those who do not realise it only come to see

their good deeds appearing as bad ones on the Day of

Resurrection; they are the ones referred to in Allah's words:

"And something will come to them from Allah

which they

had never anticipated, for the evil of their

deeds will become apparent to them. (39:47-48)"

And also:

"Say: Shall We tell you who will lose most in

respect of their

deeds? Those whose efforts were astray in the

life of this world, while they thought that

they were doing good works. (18:103-104)"

Yaqub said: "A devout person is someone who conceals

things that are good, in the same way that he conceals

things that are bad."

As-Sousi said: "True devotion is to lose the faculty of

being conscious of your devotion; for someone who

identifies devotion in his devotion is a person whose devotion

is in need of devotion." To contemplate devotion is to admire

it, and admiration is an afflication; and that which is pure is

whatever is free of all afflictions. This means that one's deeds

should be purified from any self-admiration concerning the

actions they entail.

Ayyub said: "It is much harder for the people of action

to purify their intentions than it is to execute any of

their actions."

Some people have said: "To be devout for a short while

is to survive for ever, but devotion is rare."

Suhail was asked: "What is the most difficult thing for

the self? He said: "Devotion, when the self does not

have the good fortunre of being endowed with it."

Al-Fudayl said: "Forsaking action for the sake of other

people is to seek their admiration. To act for the sake

of their admiration is to associate others with Allah. Devotion

is when Allah frees you from both of these states.

Notes: 1. Sahih, an-Nisa'i, Kitab al-Jihad, 6/25; al Hafidh ibn

Hajar, Fath al-Qadir, 6/28. 2. Sahih, Ibn Ma'jah; also Ibn

Hibban, Marwarid adh-Dham'an, p.47, on the authority of Zaid ibn


Asking Forgiveness



Al-Istighfaar (Asking Forgiveness)

Sheikh-ul-Islam ibn Taymiyyah rahimahullaah

Majmoo al-Fataawaa 10/88-90

The Messenger of Allah, sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam, said: «The master of invocations for forgiveness is that the servant says: O' my 'ilâh You are my Lord, there is no 'ilâh but You. You created me, and I am your bondservant, and I will stick to my covenant and promise [of faith and sincere obedience] to You, as to my ability. I seek refuge in You from the evil of what I have done, I acknowledge, to You, your bounties upon me, and I acknowledge, to You, my sin. Thus forgive me, for none forgives sins except You. Whoever says this as he enters upon evening, then, dies that night, he would enter Paradise; and if one says this as he enters upon morning, then, dies that day, he would enter Paradise» [Al-Bukhari].

The servant is always in the blessings of Allah, which necessitate thankfulness, and in sinfulness, which requires seeking forgiveness. Both of these matters are required and essential for the servant at all times, as the servant does not cease to alternate between Allah's (various) favours and blessings, and does not cease to be in need of repentance and seeking forgiveness.

This is why the Master of the Children of Adam, and the Leader of the Pious, Muhammad, (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) sought forgiveness in all circumstances. He said in an authentic Hadith reported by al-Bukhari: «O people repent to your Lord, for verily I seek forgiveness from Allah and repent to him more than seventy times in a day» [Bukhari].

It is reported in Saheeh Muslim that he said: «I seek forgiveness one hundred times in a day» [Muslim].

`Abdullah ibn `Umar said: We counted in a single sitting the Messenger of Allah, (sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam), saying one hundred times: «My Lord, forgive me and accept my repentance, verily you are Acceptor of Repentance, Oft-Forgiving» [Ahmad, Abu Dawood, Ibn Maajah].





This is why seeking forgiveness was legislated at the end of actions. Allah the Exalted said: {Those who seek forgiveness before dawn (at late night)} [Quran, 3:17].





Some of them said: "Give life to your nights by performing Prayer, and when the time of late night comes, concern yourself with seeking forgiveness".

It is related in the Saheeh that the Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam), when he finished his Prayer, he would seek forgiveness three times and say: «O' my 'ilãh You are 'As-Salãm [One free from flaws], and from You comes Salãm [peace, or safety], blessed are Thee O' haver of glory and kindness» [Muslim].

Allah says: {And seek forgiveness of Allah. Indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful} [Quran, 73:20].





(Even) After the Prophet conveyed the Message, fought in the path of Allah with true jihad, and performed what Allah ordered more than anyone else, Allah commanded his Prophet (to perform Istighfaar), as He the Exalted said: {When the victory of Allah has come and the conquest, and you see the people entering into the religion of Allah in multitudes, then exalt [Him] with praise of your Lord and ask forgiveness of Him. Indeed, He is ever Accepting of repentance} [Quran, 110:1-3].





This is why the religion (Deen) is established with Tawheed and Istighfaar, as Allah the Exalted said: {Alif Lam Ra. [This is] a Book whose verses are perfected and then presented in detail from [one who is] Wise and Acquainted. [Through a messenger, saying], "Do not worship except Allah. Indeed, I am to you from Him a warner and a bringer of good tidings," and [saying], "Seek forgiveness of your Lord and repent to Him, [and] He will let you enjoy a good provision} [Quran, 11:1-3].





And Allah says: {So take a straight course to Him and seek His forgiveness} [Quran, 41:6].

And He says: {So know [O Muhammad], that there is no deity except Allah and ask forgiveness for your sin and for the believing men and believing women} [Quran, 47:19].

This is why it was it came in a narration: «The Shaytan said: People are destroyed with sins, and they destroy me with 'Laa ilaha ill Allah' and seeking forgiveness» [Reported by Ibn Abi Asim and Abu Ya`la, but its chain is a fabrication].

Yonus, `alayhis salam, said: {There is no deity except You; exalted are You. Indeed, I have been of the wrongdoers} [Quran, 21:87].

The Prophet (sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam), when he would ride his mount, he would praise Allah, then say Allahu Akbar three times, then say: «I testify that there is no 'ilah except You, Glorified are You, I have transgressed upon myself, so forgive me» [Abu Dawood and at-Tirmidhi, who said it is Hasan Sahih].

Expiation of a gathering with which the gathering is completed is (the supplication): «Glorified are You O' my 'ilãh and I am in Your praise, I testify that there is no 'ilah except You, I ask Your forgiveness and repent unto You» [Abu Dawood and At-Tirmidhi, who said it is Hasan Sahih].




Allah knows best, and may His blessings and peace be upon [the Prophet] Muhammad.


Understanding Our Love for Allah & for His Messenger


Understanding Our Love for Allah & for His Messenger

Abd al-Rahmân al-Barrâk

All praise is due to Allah.

Allah says: {Say (O Muhammad): If you do love Allah, follow me: Allah will love you and forgive you your sins} [Sûrah Imrân: 31].

This verse affirms the believer's love for Allah as well as the relationship between that love and the believer's love that a believer has for the Messenger. There are other verses that add to this understanding.

For instance, Allah says, confirming that our love for Him is the essence of our faith: {O you who believe, if any from among you turn back from his faith, soon will Allah produce a people whom He will love as who will love Him} [Sûrah al-Mâ'idah: 54].

Allah also says: {Say: If it be that your fathers, your sons, your brothers, your spouses, or your kindred, the wealth that ye have gained, the commerce in which you fear a decline, or the dwellings in which you delight are dearer to you than Allah or His Messenger, or striving in His cause, then wait until Allah brings about His Decision} [Sûrah al-Tawbah: 24].

This verse show the honor of having sincere love for Allah and for His Prophet (peace be upon him). The love that a believer has for Allah must be greater than anything. The love that a believer has for Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) should be more than that for any other created being, such as love for family, children, parents, and others.

In an authentic hadîth, the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: «No one truly believes until I am more beloved to him than his son, his father and all other people» [Sahîh al-Bukhârî (14) and Sahîh Muslim (63)].

In another hadîth, it reads: «If anyone possesses three qualities, he will experience the sweetness of faith: That Allah and His Messenger are dearer to him than anything else, to love someone only for Allah's sake, and to hate relapsing into unbelief as he would hate being thrown into the fire» [Sahîh al-Bukhârî (15) and Sahîh Muslim (60)].

The meaning of love is clear. On a most obvious level, it is an emotion, the emotional opposite of hate. It is a function of the heart. Our love for Allah, moreover, is the essence of our worship, since pure and sincere worship means complete love together with the complete humility. The worshipper’s faith in his Lord and his knowledge of Him vary with the degree of the love and honor in which he holds his Lord. The worship which is prescribed by Allah depends on the true state of the heart.

Our love of the Prophet (peace be upon him) is quite different. It follows as a consequence of our love for Allah. We love the Prophet (peace be upon him) because he is the Messenger of Allah, because he is the best in character, because the most sincere and kindest person among all human beings. We love him for what he brought us: the guidance and the true religion. We must love him more than we love any other created being, but still it is from the type of love that we have for a created being, and not the love that we have for the Creator. It is as the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: «No one truly believes until I am more beloved to him than his children, his parents, and all other people» [Reported by Al-Bukhary].

Love for the Prophet (peace be upon him) is a sincere love inspired by knowledge of his great character and his kindness, and by an appreciation of his efforts and sacrifices in calling to Allah and advising the people.

Allah says: {Now there has come unto you a Messenger from amongst yourselves: it grieves him that you should suffer, ardently anxious is he over you: to the believers is he most kind and merciful} [Sûrah al-Tawbah: 128]

Therefore, the love we must have for Allah and the Prophet (peace be upon him) must both be genuine.

The difference between the two is that the love we have for Allah is for His very being, His essence. It is enriched by our knowledge of Allah's most beautiful names and His supreme attributes that inspire reverence, awe, and feelings of glorification, humility and submission to His greatness. This is the love we have for Allah: a love of reverence, veneration, and awe. This is exclusively for Allah and must never be given to any created being.

Our love for the Prophet (peace be upon him) comes as a consequence of our love for Allah. In other words, we love the Prophet (peace be upon him) because he is the Messenger of Allah, and the kindest, most gentle, and ethical human being there ever was. He was kinder and more merciful to people than their own parents are to them. It is obvious that the right of the Prophet (peace be upon him) to be loved, respected and honored, is more than that of parents.

This is a weighty love indeed, since we know that Allah holds in honor the rights of the parents and mentions being kind to them along with His own rights upon us.

Allah emphasizes just how important their rights are by making mention of their rights at the same time that He orders us to worship Him. Allah says: {Serve Allah, and join not any partners with Him; and do good to parents} [Sûrah al-Nisâ': 36]

He says: {Your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him, and that you be kind to parents} [Sûrah al-Isrâ': 23]

May peace and blessing be upon the Prophet Muhammad and upon all the other Prophets.

How to be successful in life


How to be successful in life

(In the light of the Glorious Qurân and the Sunnah)


Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid


How to obtain success and prosperity in this world and hereafter? What kind of success or prosperity that Islam wants the Ummah Islam gain in this world?


Praise be to Allah.

Peace of mind, contentment, happiness and freedom from worries and anxiety… these are what everyone wants, and these are the ways in which people can have a good life and find complete happiness and joy.

There are religious means of achieving that, and natural and practical means, but no one can combine all of them except the believers; although other people may achieve some of them, they will miss out on others.

There follows a summary of the means of achieving this aim for which everyone is striving. In some cases, those who achieve many of them will live a joyful life and a good life; in other cases, those who fail to achieve all of them will live a life of misery and hardship. And there are others which are in between, according to what the means he is able to attain. These means include the following:

1 Faith and righteous deeds:

This is the greatest and most fundamental of means. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):

{Whoever works righteousness — whether male or female — while he (or she) is a true believer (of Islamic Monotheism) verily, to him We will give a good life (in this world with respect, contentment and lawful provision), and We shall pay them certainly a reward in proportion to the best of what they used to do (i.e. Paradise in the Hereafter)} [Quran, 16:97].

{مَنْ عَمِلَ صَالِحاً مِّن ذَكَرٍ أَوْ أُنثَى وَهُوَ مُؤْمِنٌ فَلَنُحْيِيَنَّهُ حَيَاةً طَيِّبَةً وَلَنَجْزِيَنَّهُمْ أَجْرَهُم بِأَحْسَنِ مَا كَانُواْ يَعْمَلُونَ}

Transliteration: Man `Amila Şāliĥāan Min Dhakarin 'Aw 'Unthá Wa Huwa Mu'uminun Falanuĥyiyannahu Ĥayāatan Ţayyibatan Wa Lanajziyannahum 'Ajrahum Bi'aĥsani Mā Kānū Ya`malūna

Allah tells us and promises us that whoever combines faith with righteous deeds will have a good life and a good reward in this world and in the Hereafter.

The reason for that is clear: those who believe in Allah – with sincere faith that motivates them to do righteous deeds that change hearts and attitudes and guides them to the straight path in this world and the Hereafter – follow principles and guidelines by means of which they deal with everything that happens to them, be it the causes of happiness and excitement or the causes of anxiety, worry and grief.

They deal with the things that they like by accepting them and giving thanks for them, and using them in good ways. When they deal with them in this manner, that creates in them a sense of excitement and the hope that it will continue and that they will be rewarded for their gratitude, which is more important than the good things that happen to them. And they deal with bad things, worries and distress by resisting those that they can resist, alleviating those that they can alleviate, and bearing with goodly patience those that they cannot avoid. Thus as a result of the bad things they gain a lot of benefits, experience, strength, patience and hope of reward, which are more important and which diminish the hardships they have undergone and replace them with happiness and hope for the bounty and reward of Allah.

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) expressed this in a saheeh hadeeth in which he said: «How wonderful is the situation of the believer, for all his affairs are good. If something good happens to him, he gives thanks for it and that is good for him; if something bad happens to him, he bears it with patience, and that is good for him. This does not apply to anyone but the believer» [Narrated by Muslim, no. 2999].

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) told us that the believer is always gaining and the reward for his deeds is always multiplying, no matter what happens to him, good or bad.

2Being kind to people in word and deed, and all kinds of doing good.

This is one of the means of removing worry, distress and anxiety. By this means Allah wards off worries and distress from righteous and immoral like, but the believer has the greater share of that, and is distinguished by the fact that his kindness to others stems from sincerity and the hope of reward, so Allah makes it easy for him to be kind to others because of the hope that this will bring good things and ward off bad things, by means of his sincerity and hope of reward. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):

{لاَّ خَيْرَ فِي كَثِيرٍ مِّن نَّجْوَاهُمْ إِلاَّ مَنْ أَمَرَ بِصَدَقَةٍ أَوْ مَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ إِصْلاَحٍ بَيْنَ النَّاسِ وَمَن يَفْعَلْ ذَلِكَ ابْتَغَاء مَرْضَاتِ اللّهِ فَسَوْفَ نُؤْتِيهِ أَجْراً عَظِيماً}

Transliteration: Lā Khayra Fī Kathīrin Min Najwāhum 'Illā Man 'Amara Bişadaqatin 'Aw Ma`rūfin 'Aw 'Işlāĥin Bayna An-Nāsi Wa Man Yaf`al Dhālika Abtighā'a Marđāati Allāhi Fasawfa Nu'utīhi 'Ajrāan `Ažīmāan

{There is no good in most of their secret talks save (in) him who orders Sadaqah (charity in Allah's Cause), or Ma‘roof (Islamic Monotheism and all the good and righteous deeds which Allah has ordained), or conciliation between mankind; and he who does this, seeking the good Pleasure of Allah, We shall give him a great reward} [Quran, 4:114].

Part of that great reward is relief from worry, distress, troubles, etc.

3 – Another of the means of warding off anxiety that stems from nervous tension and being preoccupied with disturbing thoughts is to occupy oneself with good deeds or seeking beneficial knowledge, for that will distract one from dwelling on the matters that are causing anxiety. In this way a person may forget about the things that are making him worried and distressed, and he may become happy and more energetic. This is another means that believers and others have in common, but the believer is distinguished by his faith, sincerity and hope of reward when he occupies himself with that knowledge which he is learning or teaching, or with the good deeds that he is doing.

The work with which he occupies himself should be something that he likes and enjoys, for that is more likely to produce the desired results. And Allah knows best.

4 – Another thing that may ward off worry and anxiety is focusing all one’s thoughts of the present day, and not worrying about the future or grieving about the past. Hence the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) sought refuge with Allah from worry and regret, from regret for things in the past which one cannot put right or change, and worry which may come because of fear for the future. So one should focus only on the present day, and focus one's efforts on getting things right today. For if a person is focused on that, this means that he will do things properly and forget about worry and regret.

When the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said a du’aa’ or taught a du’aa’ to his Ummah, as well as urging them to seek the help of Allah and hope for His bounty, he was also urging them to strive to attain the thing they were praying for through their own efforts and to forget about the thing which they were praying would be warded off from them. Because du’aa’ (supplication) must be accompanied by action. So a person must strive to attain that which will benefit him in worldly and spiritual terms, and ask his Lord to make his efforts successful, and he should seek His help in that, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said:

«Strive for that which will benefit you and seek the help of Allah, and do not be helpless. If anything (bad) happens to you, do not say, ‘If only I had done such-and-such, then such-and-such would have happened.’ Rather you should say, ‘Qaddara Allah wa ma sha’a fa’ala (Allah decrees, and what He wills He does),’ for (the words) ‘If only’ open the door to the Shaytaan» [Narrated by Muslim].

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) connected the matter of striving to achieve good things with the matter of seeking the help of Allah and not giving in to feelings of helplessness which are a harmful kind of laziness, and with the matter of accepting things in the past which are over and done with, and acknowledging that the will and decree of Allah will inevitably come to pass. He described matters as being of two types:

1 – Matters which a person may strive to achieve or to achieve whatever he can of them, or to ward them off or alleviate them. In such cases a person must strive and make the effort, and also seek the help of Allah.

2 – Matters where such is not possible, so he must have peace of mind, accept them and submit to Allah's will.

Undoubtedly paying attention to this principle will bring happiness and relieve worry and distress.

5 – One of the greatest means of feeling content and relaxed and of acquiring peace of mind is to remember Allah a great deal (dhikr). That has a great effect in bringing contentment and peace of mind, and relieving worry and distress. Allah says:

{الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ وَتَطْمَئِنُّ قُلُوبُهُم بِذِكْرِ اللّهِ أَلاَ بِذِكْرِ اللّهِ تَطْمَئِنُّ الْقُلُوبُ}

Transliteration: Al-Ladhīna 'Āmanū Wa Taţma'innu Qulūbuhum Bidhikri Allāhi 'Alā Bidhikri Allāhi Taţma'innu Al-Qulūbu

{Verily, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest} [Quran, 13:28].

Remembering Allah (dhikr) has a great effect in achieving this aim because it has a special influence and because of the hope that it brings of reward.

6 – Another of the means of bringing happiness and relieving worry and distress is striving to eliminate the things that cause worry and to achieve the things that bring happiness. That may be done by forgetting about bad things in the past which cannot be changed, and realizing that dwelling on them is a waste of time. So a person must strive to stop himself from thinking of that, and also strive to stop himself from feeling anxious about the future and the things that he may imagine of poverty, fear and other bad things that he thinks may happen to him in the future. He should realize that the future is something unknown, he cannot know what good or bad things are going to happen to him. That is in the hand of the Almighty, the Most Wise, and all that His slaves can do is to strive to attain the good things and to ward off the bad things. A person should realize that if he diverts his thoughts from worrying about his future and puts his trust in his Lord to take care of his situation, and puts his mind at rest concerning that, if he does that, then his heart will be at peace and his situation will improve and he will be relieved of worry and anxiety.

One of the most effective ways of dealing with worries about the future is to recite this du’aa’ which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) used to recite:

«Allaahumma aslih li deeni alladhi huwa ‘ismatu amri, wa aslih li dunyaaya allati fiha ma’aashi, wa aslih li aakhirati allati ilayha ma’aadi, waj’al al-hayaata ziyaadatan li fi kulli khayr, wa’l-mawta raahatan li min kulli sharr (O Allah, correct my religious commitment which is the foundation of my life, and correct my worldly affairs in which is my livelihood, and grant me good in the Hereafter to which is my return. Make my life a means of accumulating good, and make death a respite for me from all evil)» [Narrated by Muslim, 2720].

And he said: «Allaahumma rahmataka arju fa la takilni ila nafsi tarfata ‘aynin wa aslih li sha’ni kullahu, laa ilaaha illa anta (O Allah, for Your mercy I hope, so do not abandon me to myself even for a moment. And correct all my affairs. There is no god but You)» [Narrated by Abu Dawood with a saheeh isnaad, no. 5090; classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Kalim al-Tayyib, p. 49].

If a person utters these du’aa’s, which ask that his spiritual and worldly affairs may be set right or corrected, with proper presence of mind and sincerity of intention, whilst striving to achieve that, Allah will grant him what he has prayed for, hoped for and striven for, and He will turn his worry into joy and happiness.

7 – If a person experiences anxiety and distress because of a disaster, then one of the most effective means of relieving himself of that is to think of the worst scenario to which that may lead, and try to accept that. When he has done that, then he should try to alleviate it as much as possible. By means of this acceptance and these efforts, he will relieve himself of his worries and distress, and instead of worrying he will strive to bring about good things and to deal with whatever he can of the bad things.

If he is faced with things that cause fear or the possibility of sickness or poverty, then he should deal with that by striving to make himself accept that, or something even worse, with contentment, because by making himself accept the worst-case scenario, he lessens the impact of the thing and makes it seem less terrible, especially if he occupies himself with efforts to ward it off as much as he can. Thus as well as striving to achieve something good which will distract him from his worries about calamity, he will also renew his strength to resist bad things, and put his trust and reliance in Allah.

Undoubtedly these matters are of great benefit in attaining happiness and peace of mind, as well as bringing the hope of reward in this world and in the Hereafter. This is something which is well known from the experience of many who have tried it.

8 – Steadfastness of heart and not being disturbed about the imaginary things that bad thoughts may bring to mind. For when a person gives in to his imagination and lets his mind be disturbed by these thoughts, such as fear of disease and the like, or anger and confusion stirred up by some grievous matter, or the expectation of bad things and the loss of good things, that will fill him with worries, distress, mental and physical illness and nervous breakdowns, which will have a bad effect on him and which causes a great deal of harm, as many people have seen. But when a person depends on Allah and puts his trust in Him, and does not give in to his imagination or let bad thoughts overwhelm him, and he relies on Allah and has hope of His bounty, that wards off his worries and distress, and relieves him of a great deal of mental and physical sickness. It gives indescribable strength, comfort and happiness to the heart. How many hospitals are filled with the mentally sick victims of illusions and harmful imagination; how often have these things had an effect upon the hearts of many strong people, let alone the weak ones; how often have they led to foolishness and insanity.

It should be noted that your life will follow your train of thought. If your thoughts are of things that will bring you benefit in your spiritual or worldly affairs, then your life will be good and happy. Otherwise it will be the opposite.

The person who is safe from all of that is the one who is protected by Allah and helped by Him to strive to achieve that which will benefit and strengthen the heart and ward off anxiety. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):

{And whosoever puts his trust in Allah, then He will suffice him} [Quran, 65:3]

{وَمَن يَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى اللَّهِ فَهُوَ حَسْبُهُ}

Transliteration: Wa Man Yatawakkal `Alaá Allāhi Fahuwa Ĥasbuhu

i.e., He will be sufficient for all that is worrying him in his spiritual and worldly affairs. The one who puts his trust in Allah will have strength in his heart and will not be affected by anything he imagines or be disturbed by events, because he knows that these are the result of vulnerable human nature and of weakness and fear that have no basis. He also knows that Allah has guaranteed complete sufficiency to those who put their trust in Him. So he trusts in Allah and finds peace of mind in His promise, and thus his worry and anxiety are dispelled; hardship is turned to ease, sadness is turned to joy, fear is turned to peace. We ask Allah to keep us safe and sound, and to bless us with strength and steadfastness of heart, and complete trust, for Allah has guaranteed all good things to those who put their trust in Him, and has guaranteed to ward off all bad and harmful things from them.

If bad things happen or there is the fear of such, then you should count the many blessings that you are still enjoying, both spiritual and worldly, and compare them with the bad things that have happened, for when you compare them you will see the many blessings that you are enjoying, and this will make the bad things appear less serious.

See al-Wasaa’il al-Mufeedah li’l-Hayaat al-Sa’eedah by Shatkh ‘Abd al-Rahmaan ibn Sa’di

Ibn al-Qayyim summed fifteen ways through which Allah may dispel worries and regret. These are as follows:

1- Tawheed al-Ruboobiyyah (belief in the Oneness of Divine Lordship).

2- Tawheed al-Uloohiyyah (belief in the Oneness of the Divine nature).

3- Tawheed of knowledge and belief (i.e., Tawheed al-Asma’ wa’l_Sifaat, belief in the Oneness of the Divine names and attributes).

4- Thinking of Allah as being above doing any injustice to His slaves, and above punishing anyone for no cause on the part of the slave that would require such punishment.

5- The person’s acknowledging that he is the one who has done wrong.

6- Beseeching Allah by means of the things that are most beloved to Him, which are His names and attributes. Two of His names that encompass the meanings of all other names and attributes are al-Hayy (the Ever-Living) and al-Qayyoom (the Eternal).

7- Seeking the help of Allah Alone.

8- Affirming one's hope in Him.

9- Truly putting one’s trust in Him and leaving matters to Him, acknowledging that one's forelock is in His hand and that He does as He wills, that His will is forever executed and that He is just in all that He decrees.

10- Letting one's heart wander in the garden of the Qur’aan, seeking consolation in it from every calamity, seeking healing in it from all diseases of the heart, so that it will bring comfort to his grief and healing for his worries and distress.

11- Seeking forgiveness.

12- Repentance.

13- Jihad.

14- Salah (prayer).

15- Declaring that he has no power and no strength, and leaving matters to the One in Whose hand they are.

We ask Allah to keep us safe and sound from worries and to relieve us of distress and anxiety, for He is the All-Hearing, Ever-Responsive, and He is the Ever-Living, Eternal.

See Alhomoom – Dealing with Worries and Stress, in the Books section of this site.

And Allah knows best. May Allah send blessings and peace upon our Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions.

Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid

Punishments for neglecting jihad for the sake of Allaah


Is there a specific punishment that is deserved by those who neglect jihad for the sake of Allaah?

Praise be to Allaah.

The command to wage jihad for the sake of Allaah, and the warning against neglecting jihad, appear in many verses of the Qur’aan and ahaadeeth.

If the Muslims neglect jihad for the sake of Allaah, and prefer a life of ease, and focus only on this world, they will face humiliation and scorn, and all their affairs will be corrupted. They expose themselves to the wrath and anger of Allaah, and they expose Islam to loss and defeat at the hands of kufr. Hence neglecting jihad is a major sin.

Ibn Hajar said in (al-Zawaajir): "The 390th, 391st and 392nd major sins are neglecting jihad when it becomes an obligation, which is when aggressors enter the Muslim land or when they seize a Muslim, and it is possible to rescue him from them and the people neglect jihad altogether and when the people in a region neglect to fortify their borders so that there is a risk of the kuffaar overrunning them because of that.” end quote.

Hence it was well known and well established among the Sahaabah that no one refrains from taking part in jihad when it becomes fard ‘ayn (an individual obligation) except one who is weak and is therefore excused or one who is a hypocrite. This is what was narrated by Ka’b ibn Maalik (may Allaah be pleased with him) when he stayed behind from the campaign of Tabook: “When I came out to the people after the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) had gone out, I went around among them and was distressed to see no one except a man who was known to be a hypocrite or weak men whom Allaah had excused.” [Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 4066; Muslim, 4973].

The evidence also states some of the punishments that result from that. For example:

1 – Neglecting jihad leads to doom in this world and in the Hereafter.

In this world the craven coward is humiliated and enslaved, he is a follower, not a leader. In the Hereafter, neglecting jihad will be a cause of Allaah's punishment.

Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And spend in the Cause of Allaah (i.e. Jihad of all kinds) and do not throw yourselves into destruction (by not spending your wealth in the Cause of Allaah), and do good. Truly, Allaah loves Al-Muhsinoon (the good-doers” [al-Baqarah 2:195].

{وَأَنفِقُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ وَلاَ تُلْقُواْ بِأَيْدِيكُمْ إِلَى التَّهْلُكَةِ وَأَحْسِنُوَاْ إِنَّ اللّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِينَ}

Transliteration: Wa 'Anfiqū Fī Sabīli Allāhi Wa Lā Tulqū Bi'aydīkum 'Ilá At-Tahlukati Wa 'Aĥsinū 'Inna Allāha Yuĥibbu Al-Muĥsinīna

al-Tirmidhi (2972) narrated that Aslam Abu ‘Imraan said: "We were in the city of the Byzantines (i.e., Constantinople) and a great troop of the Byzantines came out to us. One of the Muslim men attacked the Byzantine ranks until he penetrated them, and the people shouted and said “Subhaan-Allaah, he has thrown himself into destruction.” Abu Ayyoob al-Ansaari stood up and said: “O people, you misinterpret this verse in this way; rather this verse was revealed concerning us, the Ansaar. When Allaah caused Islam to prevail and its supporters increased, we said to one another in secret, without speaking to the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him): ‘Our wealth is neglected. Allaah has caused Islam to prevail and its supporters have increased. Why don’t we stay with our property and improve it?’ Then Allaah revealed Qur’aan to His Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), refuting what we had said: “And spend in the Cause of Allaah (i.e. Jihad of all kinds) and do not throw yourselves into destruction” [al-Baqarah 2:195]. This destruction was our staying with our property to improve it, and neglecting to fight (in jihad). Abu Ayyoob never stopped fighting for the sake of Allaah until he was buried in Constantinople. [Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Tirmidhi].

It says in Tuhfat al-Ahwadhi: "This hadeeth indicates that what is meant by throwing oneself into destruction is taking care of one’s family and wealth at the expense of jihad".

2 – Neglecting jihad is a cause of humiliation and scorn

Abu Dawood (3462) narrated that Ibn ‘Umar said: I heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say: «When you engage in ‘aynah transactions (a kind of transaction intended to circumvent the prohibition on riba or usury), and you take hold of the tails of oxen and you are content with agriculture (at the time when jihad is obligatory), and you give up jihad, then Allaah will send upon you humiliation that will not be dispelled until you return to your religion, Allaah will send upon you humiliation that will not be dispelled until you return to your religion, Allaah will send upon you humiliation that will not be dispelled until you return to your religion» [Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood].

Our Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) indeed spoke the truth, for the one who looks at the state of the Muslims today will see that they have become very careless about their religion. They consume riba and they are focused on this world, and they have neglected jihad for the sake of Allaah. And what is the result? Allaah has subjected them to humiliation, and they turn to the east and to the west, humiliated and lowly, asking them for support against their enemies, and they do not realize that this humiliation will not be lifted from them until they go back to their religion as the truthful Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said.

Allaah has indeed spoken the truth: “Give to the hypocrites the tidings that there is for them a painful torment.

Those who take disbelievers for Awliyaa’ (protectors or helpers or friends) instead of believers, do they seek honour, power and glory with them? Verily, then to Allaah belongs all honour, power and glory” [al-Nisa’ 4:138-139 – interpretation of the meaning].

{بَشِّرِ الْمُنَافِقِينَ بِأَنَّ لَهُمْ عَذَاباً أَلِيماً (138) الَّذِينَ يَتَّخِذُونَ الْكَافِرِينَ أَوْلِيَاء مِن دُونِ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ أَيَبْتَغُونَ عِندَهُمُ الْعِزَّةَ فَإِنَّ العِزَّةَ لِلّهِ جَمِيعاً}

Transliteration: Bashshiri Al-Munāfiqīna Bi'anna Lahum `Adhābāan 'Alīmāan, Al-Ladhīna Yattakhidhūna Al-Kāfirīna 'Awliyā'a Min Dūni Al-Mu'uminīna 'Ayabtaghūna `Indahumu Al-`Izzata Fa'inna Al-`Izzata Lillāhi Jamī`āan

3 – Neglecting jihad is a cause of Allaah's punishment in this world and in the Hereafter

Abu Dawood (2503) narrated from Abu Umaamah that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: «Whoever does not fight or does not equip a warrior or support the family of a warrior in his absence, Allaah will strike him with calamity before the Day of Resurrection» [Classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood].

Al-Qaari’ah (translated here as calamity) means a disaster that occurs suddenly.

And Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “O you who believe! What is the matter with you, that when you are asked to march forth in the Cause of Allaah (i.e. Jihaad) you cling heavily to the earth? Are you pleased with the life of this world rather than the Hereafter? But little is the enjoyment of the life of this world as compared to the Hereafter.

If you march not forth, He will punish you with a painful torment and will replace you by another people; and you cannot harm Him at all, and Allaah is Able to do all things” [al-Tawbah 9:38-39].

{يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ مَا لَكُمْ إِذَا قِيلَ لَكُمُ انفِرُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ اثَّاقَلْتُمْ إِلَى الأَرْضِ أَرَضِيتُم بِالْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا مِنَ الآخِرَةِ فَمَا مَتَاعُ الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا فِي الآخِرَةِ إِلاَّ قَلِيلٌ (38) إِلاَّ تَنفِرُواْ يُعَذِّبْكُمْ عَذَاباً أَلِيماً وَيَسْتَبْدِلْ قَوْماً غَيْرَكُمْ وَلاَ تَضُرُّوهُ شَيْئاً وَاللّهُ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ}

Transliteration: Yā 'Ayyuhā Al-Ladhīna 'Āmanū Mā Lakum 'Idhā Qīla Lakum Anfirū Fī Sabīli Allāhi Aththāqaltum 'Ilá Al-'Arđi 'Arađītum Bil-Ĥayāati Ad-Dunyā Mina Al-'Ākhirati Famā Matā`u Al-Ĥayāati Ad-Dunyā Fī Al-'Ākhirati 'Illā Qalīlun, 'Illā Tanfirū Yu`adhdhibkum `Adhābāan 'Alīmāan Wa Yastabdil Qawmāan Ghayrakum Wa Lā Tađurrūhu Shay'āan Wa Allāhu `Alá Kulli Shay'in Qadīrun

The punishment of which He warns them is not only punishment in the Hereafter, rather it is punishment in this world and in the Hereafter, the punishment of humiliation that befalls those who do not engage in jihad, the punishment of being deprived of the good things from which the kaafir enemy benefits. In addition to all of that, those who forsake jihad will lose more lives and more wealth than would be lost in jihad, and they offer more sacrifices than those required to retain their honour and dignity. No ummah forsook jihad but Allaah sent humility upon them, thus the cost was far greater than that that may have been required in jihad against the enemy. (Al-Zilaal, 3/1655).

Al-Sa’di (may Allaah have mercy on him) said (p. 532): “O you who believe” do you not know the requirements of faith, which is that you should hasten to obey the command of Allaah and to seek His pleasure, and to fight His enemies in jihad for the sake of your religion? So “What is the matter with you, that when you are asked to march forth in the Cause of Allaah (i.e. Jihaad) you cling heavily to the earth?” meaning, why are you so lazy and so inclined towards this world.

“Are you pleased with the life of this world rather than the Hereafter?” Your case is that of those who are content with this world and who strive for worldly purposes, caring nothing for the Hereafter because they do not believe in it.

“But little is the enjoyment of the life of this world” towards which you are inclined and which you prefer. Hasn’t Allaah given you reason with which to weigh up matters and see which deserves to be shown preference?

Is not this world – from beginning to end – as nothing in comparison to the Hereafter?

What is a man's lifespan in comparison to the lifespan of this world, so as to make worldly gain his ultimate goal and concern and restrict all his efforts and focus to this short life that is filled with distress and risk?

How can you possibly prefer it to the Hereafter which includes every kind of delight that a person could desire, where you will abide forever? No person who prefers this world to the Hereafter has faith rooted in his heart and he cannot be regarded as a man of wisdom and understanding.

Then Allaah warns them if they do not march forth, as He says: "If you march not forth, He will punish you with a painful torment” – in this world and in the Hereafter, for not marching forth when ordered to do so is a major sin that deserves the most severe punishment, because it causes a great deal of harm, because the one who stays behind (from jihad) has disobeyed Allaah and done something that He has forbidden, and he has not helped to support the religion of Allaah or to protect the Book of Allaah and His Law. He has not helped his Muslim brothers against the enemy who wants to uproot them and eradicate their religion. Perhaps others who are weak in faith will follow his example, and he may even discourage those who are involved in fighting the enemies of Allaah. Thus he will be like those whom Allaah has warned of a severe punishment: “If you march not forth, He will punish you with a painful torment” Allaah has promised to support His religion and make His word supreme regardless of whether you obey the command of Allaah or not.

“and Allaah is Able to do all things” He is not incapable of doing anything that He wants, and none can overwhelm Him.

We ask Allaah to bring the Muslims back to their religion and to remove humiliation from them.

And Allaah knows best.

The danger of hypocrisy


What is hypocrisy and how dangerous is it for the Muslims?

Praise be to Allaah.

Hypocrisy is a serious sickness and a great crime. It means making an outward display of Islam whilst inwardly concealing kufr. Hypocrisy is more dangerous than kufr (disbelief) and the punishment for it is more severe, because it is kufr mixed with Islam and its harmful effects are greater. Hence Allaah will put the hypocrites in the lowest level of Hell, as He says (interpretation of the meaning):

“Verily, the hypocrites will be in the lowest depth (grade) of the Fire; no helper will you find for them[al-Nisaa’ 4:145].

{إِنَّ الْمُنَافِقِينَ فِي الدَّرْكِ الأَسْفَلِ مِنَ النَّارِ وَلَن تَجِدَ لَهُمْ نَصِيراً}

Transliteration: 'Inna Al-Munāfiqīna Fī Ad-Darki Al-'Asfali Mina An-Nāri Wa Lan Tajida Lahum Naşīrāan

The hypocrites are always confused, always planning deceit and plots. Although outwardly they appear to be with the believers, inwardly they are with the kaafireen. So sometimes they are inclined towards the believers and sometimes they are inclined towards the kaafireen.

“(They are) swaying between this and that, belonging neither to these nor to those; and he whom Allaah sends astray, you will not find for him a way (to the truth — Islam)” [al-Nisaa’ 4:143 – interpretation of the meaning].

{مُّذَبْذَبِينَ بَيْنَ ذَلِكَ لاَ إِلَى هَـؤُلاء وَلاَ إِلَى هَـؤُلاء وَمَن يُضْلِلِ اللّهُ فَلَن تَجِدَ لَهُ سَبِيلاً}

Transliteration: Mudhabdhabīna Bayna Dhālika Lā 'Ilá Hā'uulā' Wa Lā 'Ilá Hā'uulā' Wa Man Yuđlili Allāhu Falan Tajida Lahu Sabīlāan

Because of the corruption of their hearts, the hypocrites are the most averse of mankind to the religion of Allaah, as Allaah tells us about them (interpretation of the meaning):

“And when it is said to them: ‘Come to what Allaah has sent down and to the Messenger (Muhammad),’ you (Muhammad) see the hypocrites turn away from you (Muhammad) with aversion” [al-Nisaa’ 4:61].

{وَإِذَا قِيلَ لَهُمْ تَعَالَوْا إِلَىٰ مَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ وَإِلَى الرَّسُولِ رَأَيْتَ الْمُنَافِقِينَ يَصُدُّونَ عَنْكَ صُدُودًا}

Transliteration: Wa 'Idhā Qīla Lahum Ta`ālaw 'Ilá Mā 'Anzala Allāhu Wa 'Ilá Ar-Rasūli Ra'ayta Al-Munāfiqīna Yaşuddūna `Anka Şudūdāan

The dealings of the hypocrites revolve around their own interests. When they meet the believers, they make a show of belief and loyalty, in order to deceive the believers and as an action of dissimulation, hoping for whatever good and war-booty they have. But when they meet their masters and chiefs, they say, we are with you in your shirk and kufr. Allaah says concerning them (interpretation of the meaning):

“And when they meet those who believe, they say: “We believe,” but when they are alone with their Shayaateen (devils — polytheists, hypocrites), they say: “Truly, we are with you; verily, we were but mocking

Allaah mocks at them and gives them increase in their wrong-doing to wander blindly” [al-Baqarah 2:14-15].

{وَإِذَا لَقُواْ الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ قَالُواْ آمَنَّا وَإِذَا خَلَوْاْ إِلَى شَيَاطِينِهِمْ قَالُواْ إِنَّا مَعَكْمْ إِنَّمَا نَحْنُ مُسْتَهْزِئُونَ (14) اللّهُ يَسْتَهْزِئُ بِهِمْ وَيَمُدُّهُمْ فِي طُغْيَانِهِمْ يَعْمَهُونَ}

Transliteration: Wa 'Idhā Laqū Al-Ladhīna 'Āmanū Qālū 'Āmannā Wa 'Idhā Khalaw 'Ilá Shayāţīnihim Qālū 'Innā Ma`akum 'Innamā Naĥnu Mustahzi'ūna, Allāhu Yastahzi'u Bihim Wa Yamudduhum Fī Ţughyānihim Ya`mahūna

The hypocrites have many characteristics, the worst and most serious of which is disbelief in Allaah. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And when it is said to them (hypocrites): ‘Believe as the people (followers of Muhammad, Al-Ansaar and Al-Muhaajiroon) have believed,’ they say: ‘Shall we believe as the fools have believed?’ Verily, they are the fools, but they know not” [al-Baqarah 2:13].

{وَإِذَا قِيلَ لَهُمْ آمِنُواْ كَمَا آمَنَ النَّاسُ قَالُواْ أَنُؤْمِنُ كَمَا آمَنَ السُّفَهَاء أَلا إِنَّهُمْ هُمُ السُّفَهَاء وَلَـكِن لاَّ يَعْلَمُونَ}

Transliteration: Wa 'Idhā Qīla Lahum 'Āminū Kamā 'Āmana An-Nāsu Qālū 'Anu'uminu Kamā 'Āmana As-Sufahā'u 'Alā 'Innahum Humu As-Sufahā'u Wa Lakin Lā Ya`lamūna

Among their characteristics are enmity and envy (hasad) towards the believers, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“If good befalls you (O Muhammad), it grieves them, but if a calamity overtakes you, they say: ‘We took our precaution beforehand’ and they turn away rejoicing” [al-Tawbah 9:50].

{إِن تُصِبْكَ حَسَنَةٌ تَسُؤْهُمْ وَإِن تُصِبْكَ مُصِيبَةٌ يَقُولُواْ قَدْ أَخَذْنَا أَمْرَنَا مِن قَبْلُ وَيَتَوَلَّواْ وَّهُمْ فَرِحُونَ}

Transliteration: 'In Tuşibka Ĥasanatun Tasu'uhum Wa 'In Tuşibka Muşībatun Yaqūlū Qad 'Akhadhnā 'Amranā Min Qablu Wa Yatawallaw Wa Hum Fariĥūna

Among their characteristics is mockery of Allaah, His Messenger and His religion. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“If you ask them (about this), they declare: ‘We were only talking idly and joking.’ Say: ‘Was it at Allaah, and His Ayaat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) and His Messenger that you were mocking?’

Make no excuse; you disbelieved after you had believed” [al-Tawbah 9:65-66].

{وَلَئِن سَأَلْتَهُمْ لَيَقُولُنَّ إِنَّمَا كُنَّا نَخُوضُ وَنَلْعَبُ قُلْ أَبِاللّهِ وَآيَاتِهِ وَرَسُولِهِ كُنتُمْ تَسْتَهْزِئُونَ (65) لاَ تَعْتَذِرُواْ قَدْ كَفَرْتُم بَعْدَ إِيمَانِكُمْ}

Transliteration: Wa La'in Sa'altahum Layaqūlunna 'Innamā Kunnā Nakhūđu Wa Nal`abu Qul 'Abiālllahi Wa 'Āyātihi Wa Rasūlihi Kuntum Tastahzi'ūna, Lā Ta`tadhirū Qad Kafartum Ba`da 'Īmānikum

Among their characteristics is that they spread corruption on earth, with disbelief, hypocrisy and sins. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And when it is said to them: ‘Make not mischief on the earth,’ they say: ‘We are only peacemakers.’

Verily, they are the ones who make mischief, but they perceive not” [al-Baqarah 2:11-12].

{وَإِذَا قِيلَ لَهُمْ لاَ تُفْسِدُواْ فِي الأَرْضِ قَالُواْ إِنَّمَا نَحْنُ مُصْلِحُونَ (11) أَلا إِنَّهُمْ هُمُ الْمُفْسِدُونَ وَلَـكِن لاَّ يَشْعُرُونَ}

Transliteration: Wa 'Idhā Qīla Lahum Lā Tufsidū Fī Al-'Arđi Qālū 'Innamā Naĥnu Muşliĥūna, 'Alā 'Innahum Humu Al-Mufsidūna Wa Lakin Lā Yash`urūna

Among their characteristics are slander and lies. Allaah tells us about them (interpretation of the meaning):

“They swear by Allaah that they are truly, of you while they are not of you, but they are a people (hypocrites) who are afraid (that you may kill them)” [al-Tawbah 9:56].

{وَيَحْلِفُونَ بِاللّهِ إِنَّهُمْ لَمِنكُمْ وَمَا هُم مِّنكُمْ وَلَـكِنَّهُمْ قَوْمٌ يَفْرَقُونَ}

Transliteration: Wa Yaĥlifūna Billāhi 'Innahum Laminkum Wa Mā Hum Minkum Wa Lakinnahum Qawmun Yafraqūna

Among their characteristics is that they enjoin what is evil and forbid what is good, and they are stingy with their wealth. Allaah says concerning them (interpretation of the meaning):

“The hypocrites, men and women, are one from another; they enjoin (on the people) Al-Munkar (i.e. disbelief and polytheism of all kinds and all that Islam has forbidden), and forbid (people) from Al-Ma‘roof (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do), and they close their hands [from giving (spending in Allaah’s Cause) alms]. They have forgotten Allaah, so He has forgotten them. Verily, the hypocrites are the Faasiqoon (rebellious, disobedient to Allaah)” [al-Tawbah 9:67].

{الْمُنَافِقُونَ وَالْمُنَافِقَاتُ بَعْضُهُم مِّن بَعْضٍ يَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمُنكَرِ وَيَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَقْبِضُونَ أَيْدِيَهُمْ نَسُواْ اللّهَ فَنَسِيَهُمْ إِنَّ الْمُنَافِقِينَ هُمُ الْفَاسِقُونَ}

Transliteration: Al-Munāfiqūna Wa Al-Munāfiqātu Ba`đuhum Min Ba`đin Ya'murūna Bil-Munkari Wa Yanhawna `Ani Al-Ma`rūfi Wa Yaqbiđūna 'Aydiyahum Nasū Allāha Fanasiyahum 'Inna Al-Munāfiqīna Humu Al-Fāsiqūna

Among their characteristics are greed and avarice:

“And of them are some who accuse you (O Muhammad) in the matter of (the distribution of) the alms. If they are given part thereof, they are pleased, but if they are not given thereof, behold! They are enraged![al-Tawbah 9: 58 – interpretation of the meaning].

{وَمِنْهُم مَّن يَلْمِزُكَ فِي الصَّدَقَاتِ فَإِنْ أُعْطُواْ مِنْهَا رَضُواْ وَإِن لَّمْ يُعْطَوْاْ مِنهَا إِذَا هُمْ يَسْخَطُونَ}

Transliteration: Wa Minhum Man Yalmizuka Fī Aş-Şadaqāti Fa'in 'U`ţū Minhā Rađū Wa 'In Lam Yu`ţaw Minhā 'Idhā Hum Yaskhaţūna

Among their characteristics are those which were described by the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him):

«There are four (characteristics), whoever has all of them is a complete hypocrite, and whoever has some of them has some element of hypocrisy, unless he gives it up: when he speaks, he lies; when he makes a treaty, he betrays it; when he makes a promise, he breaks it; when he quarrels, he resorts to insults» [Narrated by Muslim, 53].

Among their characteristics is a concern with appearances and fancy speech whilst they are inwardly corrupt. Allaah says concerning them (interpretation of the meaning):

“And when you look at them, their bodies please you; and when they speak, you listen to their words. They are as blocks of wood propped up. They think that every cry is against them. They are the enemies, so beware of them. May Allaah curse them! How are they denying (or deviating from) the Right Path?” [al-Munaafiqoon 63:4].

{وَإِذَا رَأَيْتَهُمْ تُعْجِبُكَ أَجْسَامُهُمْ وَإِن يَقُولُوا تَسْمَعْ لِقَوْلِهِمْ كَأَنَّهُمْ خُشُبٌ مُّسَنَّدَةٌ يَحْسَبُونَ كُلَّ صَيْحَةٍ عَلَيْهِمْ هُمُ الْعَدُوُّ فَاحْذَرْهُمْ قَاتَلَهُمُ اللَّهُ أَنَّى يُؤْفَكُونَ}

Transliteration: Wa 'Idhā Ra'aytahum Tu`jibuka 'Ajsāmuhum Wa 'In Yaqūlū Tasma` Liqawlihim Ka'annahum Khushubun Musannadatun Yaĥsabūna Kulla Şayĥatin `Alayhim Hum Al-`Adūwu Fāĥdharhum Qātalahum Allāhu 'Annaá Yu'ufakūna

If the kuffaar are obvious enemies from without, then the hypocrites are hidden enemies from within. They are more harmful and more dangerous to the Muslims, because they mix with them and know their situation. Allaah has decreed that the ultimate destiny of the kuffaar and hypocrites will be in Hell:

“Surely, Allaah will collect the hypocrites and disbelievers all together in Hell”[al-Nisaa’ 4:140 – interpretation of the meaning].

{إِنَّ اللَّهَ جَامِعُ الْمُنَافِقِينَ وَالْكَافِرِينَ فِي جَهَنَّمَ جَمِيعًا}

Transliteration: 'Inna Allāha Jāmi`u Al-Munāfiqīna Wa Al-Kāfirīna Fī Jahannama Jamī`āan

But because of the seriousness of the harm they cause, the hypocrites will be in the lowest level of Hell, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“Verily, the hypocrites will be in the lowest depth (grade) of the Fire" [al-Nisaa’ 4:145].

{إِنَّ الْمُنَافِقِينَ فِي الدَّرْكِ الْأَسْفَلِ مِنَ النَّارِ}

Transliteration: 'Inna Al-Munāfiqīna Fī Ad-Darki Al-'Asfali Mina An-Nāri

Because the danger posed to the Muslim ummah by the kuffaar and hypocrites is so great, Allaah commanded His Messenger to strive against them:

“O Prophet (Muhammad)! Strive hard against the disbelievers and the hypocrites, and be severe against them; their abode will be Hell, and worst indeed is that destination” [al-Tahreem 66:9 – interpretation of the meaning].

{يَا أَيُّهَا النَّبِيُّ جَاهِدِ الْكُفَّارَ وَالْمُنَافِقِينَ وَاغْلُظْ عَلَيْهِمْ وَمَأْوَاهُمْ جَهَنَّمُ وَبِئْسَ الْمَصِيرُ}

Transliteration: Yā 'Ayyuhā An-Nabīyu Jāhidi Al-Kuffāra Wa Al-Munāfiqīna Wa Aghluž `Alayhim Wa Ma'wāhum Jahannamu Wa Bi'sa Al-Maşīru