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FADIA BINT ISMAIL

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About FADIA BINT ISMAIL

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  1. By Fadia Bint Ismail We have all heard this saying love more expect less. Hazrat Ali (May Allah be pleased with him) said; " Beware of having long term expectations (for this world) for verily it makes one forget (his true purpose)" In order to be truly happy and to find happiness and peace in this world we as Muslims should aim to love more what Allah loves for us and dislike what Allah dislikes for us this could solve many problems we encounter and it will allow us to be contented when our expectations are not met. Having expectations is not a bad thing but sometimes and i speak from experience, when we set our expectations so high, for example we expect certain things from people, for them to act and do things according to the way we want it, when we expect things to just happen for us without any effort put in from our part, when everything fails and our expectations are not met we will definately find ourselves in a dark hole which will lead to depression, anxiety and stress. When we do things moderately, balancing our expectations, grooming ourselves to expect the unexpected we will find tranquility and contentment. The Prophet (Peace and blessigs be upon Him) said: "Be contented with what Allah has apportioned for you and you will be the richest of people" We should always remember that we should put our trust in Allah and to leave the future alone for what is preordained for us will happen when Allah wills it to happen at the time that he has decreed it to be. If you find it difficult to deal with this problem there are remedies in helping you cope. Inshallah i will try and list a few things that i hope will help everyone. I have listed two points which i will clarify on. 1) Take care of your outside aswell as your inside Your appearance is very important Allah loves beauty and he would not be pleased if you were to neglect yourself. A person with a pure and clean soul will take care of their outer and inner selfs. Remember to always say Alhamdulilah in that way you are showing Allah that you are thankful and Inshallah this will help beautify your outside and your inside. 2) Seek refuge with Allah and put your full trust in him Seeking refuge with Allah by making Istigfaar and asking for forgiveness daily is what a true believer should do. This will also help us purify our soul and bring contentment and peace to our lives. Tawakkal Allah- Put your trust in Allah and Him Alone. And Allah is alone suffecient for us. Verily my Wali [ Protector, Supporter, and helper] is Allah (Quran 19:65). Constant Dua, 5 daily prayers, following the Sunnah of Nabi (SAW) are the best remedies to tackle any problem. When we incorporate all this in our lives we will find it easy to Love More and Expect Less.
  2. By Fadia Bint Ismail Standing on the edge of the cliff. My arms spread out wide. My eyes locked on the sight below me. Waves gushing against the rocks. The breeze brushing against my face. I am ready. Ready to jump. I close my eyes imagining how i would drop to my destruction. How i had come to this point. The point where i feel like falling and never waking up. A rush of thoughts entered my mind. What have i done to myself? What have i done to my soul? I have disobeyed Allah. I have broken my promises and brought destruction to myself. At this point the tears are rolling down my face. I feel like i have no hope. I am moving closer to the edge. Ready to fall into the raging waters beneath me. Suddenly i hear a voice. A hand clutching mine trying to pull me back. I turn around. Staring at me is my own reflection. The sadness fills my eyes, What am i doing to myself. Darkness was surrounding me. A beaming light shot at me and i opened my eyes. I awoke in a frantic state. It was just a dream. It was just a dream. I sat up, my face immersed in my palms crying out. O Allah you have saved me. When darkness surrounded me and i felt i had no hope. O Allah you saved me. When sadness and grief filled my heart. O Allah you illuminated my soul and uplifted my heart. When my sins were as tall as a mountain. O Allah you forgave me. You are Most oft-Most Forgiving-Most Merciful. When everyone left me in despair. O Allah you showed me that you would always be there. You are Al Wadud-The most Loved. When i was standing on the edge ready to jump. O Allah you held my hand and pulled me back. O Allah the most praisworthy, the sustainer, the provider and giver of all things my faith in you will never deteriorate. My faith in you will grow with each passing day. My reflection, my eyes, my hands, my voice, my heart and my soul. O Allah you have blessed me. It was all just a dream. O Allah you saved me.
  3. Tears fill my eyes as i sit and think of the little time i have left with you. The time has gone by so quickly. It feels like just the other day that we welcomed you into our homes, into our lives. You brought with you the Qura, the Taraweeh, the Siyaam. You brought peace and tranquility. When you came our bodies were starved but our souls were filled. You brought with you a night which is better than a thousand months. You brought with you a Gift which is so great that only on the Day of Judgement will we truly know its value. Oh Ramadan. How i hope and pray that i have gained maximum benefit from you. How i hope and i pray that i did not waste my time on things other than the gifts that came with you. How i hope and pray that i have been forgiven during my time with you. Most of all i hope and i pray that on the day when i will meet Allah. My time with you will cause me to smile. Oh Ramadan you have brought with you love and unity between people of this Ummah. Because of you our noble guest. We strove hard to help one another, to guide one another, to show kindness to one another and to love one another simply because we share the Kalimah of La ilaha IllAllah. O Ramadan. This Ummah will surely miss you. I hope and pray that this love and unity of this Ummah will continue and grow from strength to strength after you have gone. Al Widaa Ya Ramadan. May we meet again Next year. Inshallah
  4. I saw this post and i thought i should share it. it is a simple way which we could all follow in order to help us attain Khushu in our nemaaz. This is one of the best way you can follow to attain "Khushu' " A righteous man (Hatim Al Asam) was asked:"how can you attain khushu' (concentration) in 'Nemaaz'. "every time I stand to perform Nemaaz... I imagine that : Kabah is in front of me, Al Sirat is under my feet , Jannah (Paradise) to my right and Jahannam (Hell) to my left, that the messenger of Allah (SAWS) is watching me praying, and that this is my final Nemaaz, and Angel of Death is behind me waiting me to finish my Nemaaz so that he take my soul, Then I would stand between hope and fear. Carefully pronounce "Allahu Akbar!" Then recite the Qur'an harmoniously, bow in humility and prostrate myself submissively. Then with a big hope in Allah's Mercy, I start wondering : did Allah accept my nemaaz or not ? Always perform prayer as if it is your last one, because you would never know when Allah will call you home ...
  5. One of the highest forms of Service to Allah is to invite his creation to his oneness and that in Islam is called Dawah. The person who is intending to invite people to Islam must make preparations because if he has not prepared the banquet he is only going to turn his guests hungry, he is also going to ruin his own reputation and lose his trust. One of the important factors of Dawah is Quality of service and preparations. Like the quality of one's character which is a very important factor in inviting people to the oneness of Allah. Dawah requires calmness of character and wisdom. Dawah is a very difficult yet delicate job and it requires alot of wisdom and quality. We cannot set an agenda to what we want and rush to bring people to the level of perfection, as a Da'ee we should take them step by step until they develop a level of maturity and strength. One of the many qualities that will enable you to be prepared when going out and calling people to Islam is truthfulness. Truthfulness will lead you to be prepared and you will be more alert to your surroundings and this will lead one to the pillar of talking. A Da'ee should always be prepared and the necessary knowledge is also required in order to face the difficult challenges that you will face. If you are going to speak for one minute for example you will need 30 minutes to prepare and to speak one hour you need 10 hours to prepare. That is why when you have truthfulness and you are sincere you will be more thorough in your preparation because you will know that whatever you convey is an Amanah from Allah for which you will be questioned upon. According to some of the companions of the Prophet (SAW) he never taught them more than 3 to 5 verses per day and that he use to repeat himself in order to emphasize a point. A successful speaker has three elements. Substance, Body Language and way of addressing oneself. the most important quality a Da'ee should have is to study the Sunnah of Allah so you will know what to expect in certain situations and conditions and how to deal with them. This belief and knowledge will help perfect your character as well. Character as mentioned in my previous posts is linked to preparation and knowledge because the way you act or react is driven by the attributes and knowledge of Allah and the teachings of our Nabi (SAW). When you have knowledge of the Deen you will therefor also be more prepared, for example if you are addressing someone and you speak about Hijaab or Halaal and Haraam and that is your main focus, the person you are trying to invite to Islam will be so overwhelmed that they will abandon the message. The most important thing to do when you are addressing someone, you should focus on developing the faith. A Da'ee is open minded and should always be on the look out to seek new and different kinds of knowledge as it will help you to have understanding of various topics. Islam is the way of life, all topics related to life are part of Islam. A successful Da'ee has knowledge about everyday affairs as well as religious knowledge. Our day to day dealings are with Muslims, but our Prophet Muhammad (saws), when he used do Dawah, kept all his day to day dealings with Mushrikhs. If we are distanced from those people on whom we need to give Dawah to how can we invite people to Islam? We should maintain good relations with them with the intention of Dawah and try to understand their attitude. Using this relationship, we have to understand the misconception they have regarding Islam. They may have many misconceptions about Islam. We need to first identify them and then we need to clarify them. If you don’t know how to clarify, ask those who know about it and try to clarify the misconceptions with their help. When a misconception is cleared, a person will gain a good impression. For example, because of a small misunderstanding between you and your friend, you stopped talking to him for more than 2 years. After the misunderstanding was cleared, you meet and greet each other and immediately hug each other. This strengthens the relationship. So whenever misconceptions are cleared, the person will have a new attitude. There are a list of things we should have in order to give Dawa Niyyah (intention) Making Dua to Allah (swt) for His help Preparation and knowledge along with the correct actions and mannerism Establishing good relationship with non Muslims and Clearing their misconceptions. Reciting the Quran before them and To do Dua for them. If you follow this strategy, Inshallah you can do this work alone. You don’t need anyone’s help, but bare in mind all guidance comes from Allah and all success comes from Allah. The only thing you need is passion to do this work and love of Allah and Inshallah you will succeed. I ask Allah (swt) to give Taufeeq to all Muslims to do this work and to forgive whatever short-comings we had in the past. Ameen.
  6. By Fadia Bint Ismail You probably wondering why i have the title “The Sad Reality” but so many things in this Dunya needs to be addressed. It is truly a sad reality that so many of our Muslim Sisters and Brothers are corrupting themselves with so much filth, dressing inappropriatly, drinking, nightclubs, pre-marital relationships and they are even sexually active, Yes in today’s society everyone is doing it, being pure being a virgin being one for Allah (SWT) is not what this generation aspires toward, being a Virgin is seen to be something that is taboo and if you say you are a virgin dont many of you get a smug laugh from many people and that even from your own Muslim friends or even family. What has this world come to? what has our Muslim generation come to? Ask yourself this? where are the values that every child should have embedded within them, the faith and the true love of Allah. Many have gone astray. To reform someone is not always easy, but Dawah (Calling one to Islam) should be given first to those family members who are close to you and even this to will be a mission. Your family will start to mock you, throw past things in your face but remember that when the prophets went out to call people to Islam they faced so much humiliation and mockery but the one thing they had was Sabr (Patience) and if you find this mission difficult for you then go back and read the stories of the Prophets and trust me what ever your fears were, what ever difficulties you thought you had will seem so small because you will learn patience from those before you. Inshallah. The sad reality is that even some parents allow their children to go astray. but the blame cant be on the parents alone because it is fact that if your surround yourself with the wrong people then you will become like them. It is best that you should surround yourself with people who remind you of Allah everyday. A true friend who is on the path of Deen would never persuade you to Haraam things that would destroy your relationship with Allah. Premarital relationships…well what can i say we have all been here, falling inlove believing that the person you are with is your one true love and you can not live without them, but this is the sad reality that many of today’s generation find themselves in because they seek for confirmation and comfort from the wrong source. The only one we should seek confirmation and comfort from is Allah because ALWAYS remember that when everyone leaves you and believe me when you have a boyfriend/girlfriend relationship it can only end in disaster because eventually they will leave and then what do you have? you will only have Allah. The Sad Reality…We are living in a Western world where fitting in is the main object and if you have this thought in your mind then surely you will go astray. but if you are a true Muslim and your Yaqeen (certainty) lies in Allah alone then you will be successful in every endevour Inshallah. And the Sad Reality is…as the generation gets older the weaker their faith becomes. But we make Dua that Inshallah Allah guides us all and keeps us all on the straight path Inshallah
  7. In the time of the Prophet, Tasawwuf was a reality without a name, today Tasawwuf is a name, but few know its Reality What is Tasawwuf? Tasawwuf is Good character and awareness of God, Love and affection. It is the cure for hatred and vengeance. It the heart attaining tranquillity which is the root of religion. Concentrating your mind, which is the religion of Ahmad (peace be upon him), Contemplation that travels to the Divine throne. It is a far-seeing gaze. Tasawwuf is keeping one’s distance from imagination and supposition. Tasawwuf is found in certainty. Surrendering one’s soul to the care of the inviolability of religion; Tasawwuf is the path of faith and affirmation of unity; this is the incorruptible religion, the smooth and illuminated path. It is the way to the most exalted paradise. And nothing more. I have heard that the ecstasy of the wearers of wool comes from finding the taste of religion. Tasawwuf is nothing but Shari’ah it is just this clear road. Tasawwuf is a branch of Islamic knowledge which focuses on the spiritual development of the Muslim. Allah sent His final messenger, Prophet Muhammad, as a source of knowledge for the entire Ummah. He was the fountain of Quran, Hadith, tafsir, fiqh, and so on. After the Prophet, the scholars of this Ummah carried and propagated each of these branches of knowledge. Because no one person can attain the perfection of the Prophet, who single handily assumed all of these roles, various branches of the Islamic sciences developed. For example, Imam Abu Hanifah preserved the science of fiqh and after him thousands of scholars continued in his footsteps. Hence these scholars preserved the fiqh of the Prophet. Similarly Imam Bukhari and the other famous scholars of Hadith preserved the words of the Prophet. The scholars of tajweed preserved the recitation of the Prophet. And, the scholars of Arabic grammar preserved the language of the Prophet. Along these lines, the Prophet was the model of spirituality for the world. His God-consciousness, deep spirituality, acts of worship, and love for Allah were preserved and propagated by an Islamic science called Tasawwuf. The aim of the scholars of this science was purification of the heart, and development of consciousness of Allah through submission to the Shari’ah and Sunnah. Tasawwuf stems from Sufism. Another part of Sufism is Tariqa which is different spiritual dimensions, if you follow the Shari’ah and you have tariqa it will be considered great. Two origins of the word Sufi have been suggested. Commonly, the lexical root of the word is traced to ṣafa which in Arabic means “purity”. Another origin is suf “wool”, referring to the simple cloaks the early Muslim ascetics wore. Tasawwuf is the name of the ways Sufi’s follow to reach Allah, the truth. some have said that it is Allah’s way of annihilating man with respect to his ego and self centredness and the reviving him spiritually with the lights of His essence. It strives to rid man of all kinds of bad and evil conduct and acquiring virtues. What it truly means? It means being freed from the vices and weaknesses of human nature and gaining angelic qualities and conduct only to please Allah and to live our lives only to please Allah. Tasawwuf is based on observing the rules of Shariah down to good manners and penetrating their inward meaning. The person on the path of Tasawwuf? A person who can succeed in this has the ability to never separate the outward observance of Shariah from its inward dimension and carries out the requirements of both outward and inward dimensions of religion, with this observation the person travels toward this goal in utmost humility and submission. Tasawwuf is a path leading to Allah. The persons manner: There is no room for negligent frivolous manners, the person should be like a honeybee flying from his hive to flowers and from flowers to the hive, continuously striving to gain knowledge in pursuit of attaining Allah’s pleasure. You should purify your heart from all attachments, resist all inclinations and desires and appetites from your carnal self. You should also lead your life at a spiritual level and also be ready to receive divine blessings, inspirations and in strict observance of the prophetic example. The most important part once you embark on this great journey is to be able to renounce all your own desires for the sake of the demands of Allah, the Truth. The Aim of Tasawwuf: The Aim is to purify man’s heart and employing his senses in the way of Allah and to live a life at a spiritual level through the constant performance of the acts of worshiping Allah it will deepen your consciousness of being a servant to Allah. The Benefits: The benefits are so unbelievable that even now with just a glimpse into it from my perspective i can say that it has opened my soul up so deeply and it has awakened me from everything that kept me captive. i feel that when you let go of everything you feel and think which does not relate to Allah and you allow Allah to manifest in your heart you will find true contentment and this is what Tasawwuf is” contentment and detaching yourself from this world to strive in the path of Allah. You develop the angelic dimensions, reaching substantial and true belief in Divine oneness in addition heeding the divine speech (The Quran). In conclusion: It is all very simple once you follow the right path, Sunnah and Shariah and never forgetting the Oneness of Allah and the power only he has and letting go of everything that holds you captive in this Dunya…once that happens you will feel serene and calm and most of all complete. what could be better than that? ask yourself this..living in this Dunya running after this Dunya or living in this Dunya, working in this Dunya only to please Allah and strive toward the Akhirah?
  8. Alhumdulilah,,,im so greatful i have such a wonderful life. Shukr Allah.. :)

  9. Alhumdulilah,,,im so greatful i have such a wonderful life. Shukr Allah.. :)

  10. The issue of Tabarruj is separate from that of covering the Awrah and also separate from that of the dress that a women should wear in public. Tabarruj occurs when a women performs a dazzling display of her beauty and reveals it to strangers. Tabarruj is forbidden by a clear-cut evidence from the texts of Sharia’a. Allah (SWT) says: “Such elderly women as are past the prospect of marriage – there is no blame on them if they lay aside their outer garments, provided they make not a wanton display of their beauty.” [Al Nur 60] We understand from the verse that Tabarruj is in any case completely forbidden. Allah (SWT) permitted such women to lay aside their outer garments, on the condition that they should not make a dazzling display of their beauty. If the elderly women are forbidden from Tabarruj, this means that other women are forbidden as well. Allah (SWT) says: “And that they should not strike their feet in order to draw attention to their hidden ornaments.” He (SAW) in this verse forbids one form of Tabbaruj in which women strike their feet in a way in which the ankle chain releases a sound which reveals their beauty. In the early days of Islam, women used to wear ankle chains and strike their feet to display their beauty and draw men’s attention. So the verse descended to put a stop to such dazzling display of beauty and to such kind of Tabarruj. It has been narrated on the authority of Abu-Musa Al-Ash’ari that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: “Any woman who puts on perfume and walks past a group of people and they scent it, she is considered to be an adulterer”. It means like an adulterer in terms of sin. It has also been narrated on the authority of Abu-Hurayra that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: There are two types of people of Hell whom I have not yet seen. The first are people that have whips like the tail of oxen, with which they beat people. And the second are women who are naked inspite of being dressed, they will be led astray and will lead others astray and their heads will look like the humps of camels. These women will not enter the paradise, they will not even experience the faintest scent of it, even though the fragrance of the Paradise can be perceived from a great distance.” These text bear clear evidence about the interdiction of Tabarruj. We ought to also to differenciate between Tabarruj and make up. Tabarruj is forbidden in Islam. However, applying make-up has not been forbidden by the Divine Law of Islam (Sharia’a) except in times of mourning over the loss of a husband, as it has been narrated on the authority of Umm Atyia who said that the Messenger of Allah said: The woman should not mourn any dead person more than three days, except for the husband whom she should mourn his death for four months and ten days, during which period she is not to wear colourful clothes except if the colours are not bright; she is not to put on Kohl, nor perfume, nor to cut or trim anything except the excessive curls and the long nails.” And on the authority of Abi-Dawood the same Hadith includes the phrase “nor should she dye her hair”, and in the Nissa’i version “she should not comb her hair”. This saying (Hadith) is an interdiction of applying make up when in mourning, and this means that make up is allowed otherwise. To apply Kohl or Henna, or to wear earrings, chains or bracelets etc., is allowed. The Sharia’a has however forbidden some types of make up or beauty accessories like tattoos or adding artificial hair; for on the authority of Ibni-Omar, the Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: “Allah curses the woman who adds artificial hair to her own and the one who adds it for her, and the tattooed woman and the tattoer woman.” Although the Sharia’a allows the woman to apply make up and display her beauty to her Mahrams like her brother, father, husband and others, she is still forbidden from applying make-up outdoors except for the type of make up which is in any way allowed in Muslim society. Therefore, if a woman is about to go out, she should remember that she is not going out to display her beauty or to attract men’s attention but to attend to life’s necessities like shopping etc. These are the Judgements of Awrah, and of the woman’s garments (Khimar and Jilbab), and also that of Tabarruj (dazzling display). If there were a dress which covers the woman’s Awrah, it does not mean that it is automatically allowed for her to wear it outdoors, because the Sharia’a has determined the type of garment that the woman is allowed to wear outdoors. Trousers for instance are not suitable for a woman to wear in public despite the fact that they perfectly cover the Awrah. If a woman goes out wearing trousers, then according to the texts of Sharia’a she is sinful, simply because she ignored one of her duties. That is why we are strongly advised not to confuse the issue of what the women should wear in public with that of covering the Awrah or with that of Tabarruj. Trousers, even if they are not transparent, a woman should not wear them before strange men, Muslims or not, for when she wears them she is in fact displaying her beauty and this is Tabarruj, and Tabarruj is forbidden (haram). So all items of wear like trousers and wigs and hats which the Sharia’a has not determined and deemed as fit to be worn in public are forbidden even if such items do cover the woman’s Awrah. This means that the Muslim woman should not wear items of clothing which would cover her Awrah but leaves her displaying her beauty or looking like men or looking like unbelievers.
  11. THE FRIENDS OF SHAITAN (THE CURSED ONE) 1. The first friend of mine is that leader who is a oppressor (Zalim). 2. My second friend is that business man who does his/ her business by deceiving his / her customers. 3. My third friend is that "Mo'min" (believer) who drinks alcohol. 4. My fourth friend is that rich person who is proud of his wealth and who angrily refuses to give money in charity to poor and needy. 5. My fifth friend is that person who does backbiting (Geebat), who talks to people in such a way that enemity increases between people and who reveals the defects of people. 6. My sixth friend is that person who kill other human being for any reason other than for Allah. 7. My seventh friend is that person who snatches away the belongings (such as wealth) of an orphan. 8. My eighth friend is that person whose livelihood is based on collecting interest. 9. My ninth friend is that person who gives more important to his worldly life rather than giving important to his life after death. This friend of mine prefers to performs those deeds which he know, will bring benefits in this world but in hereafter such deeds will bring loss. 10. My tenth friend is that person who keep long hopes and delays in asking for forgiveness from Allah. (Here Maulana gave the example of that person who delays in asking forgiveness from Allah. For instance he said, "people refuse to ask forgiveness from Allah because they say we are young and angel of death is not running after us yet. Therefore these people, who delay in asking for repentance, say we are not going to quit listening to music, we are not going to observe Hijab, or we are not going to keep the beard. These people say that they will do all this after ten or more years. These are the tenth friends of Shaitan, because they keep long hopes and delay in asking for forgiveness from Allah.") 11. My eleventh friend is that person who helps women to increase their interest in performing "Jaadu" (magic) on people.
  12. By Muhammad Tauseef Tariq Amongst the most mystical of commands and directions given to us by Allah, Transcendent is He, in His final revelation, is His Holy Dhikr or “remembrance”. "Remember Me and I will Remember you." (2:152) Dhikr Allah is reminding a Muslim of the reality, presence and closeness of the Lord of the Worlds to us all and in every moment. Al-Bukhari narrates that the Holy Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa aalihi wa sallam) said; “the difference between one who makes dhikr and the one who does not make dhikr is like the difference between the living and the dead.” Remembering Allah constantly in the heart, on the tongue and with your limbs is to constantly be in the Divine Presence, to keep the heart in a perpetual state of spiritual bliss awakening and reception of Divine blessings and keeps the one who is conducting the Dhikr detached from the influences of the lower worldly life. The Human will always remain in a state of yearning for Allah until the moment of his Wisaal or “meeting” with Allah i.e. his death. Until that time, Dhikr is the way in which one can ease the soul’s yearning and give the human some peace as Allah says in Surah al-Ra’d, verse 28: “Verily, in the remembrance of Allah, hearts do find their rest.” The Qur’an and the Holy Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa aalihi wa sallam) have repeatedly exhorted us to keep constant in this act of worship since it is the one thing that polishes the heart from the effects of sins and draws us in purity to our Most Loving Lord. Allahu Akbar, the Islamic sciences of the heart are so sophisticated that, for example, Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya describes how the heart encrusts over by sinning and harmful characteristics, in his Al-Wabil as-Sa’ib and how its cure is Dhikr Allah. This is taken from a tradition of the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa aalihi wa sallam), which says that “everything has its polish and the polish of hearts is dhikr Allah.” Indeed, the famous hadith related by Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah about Dhikr being the best possible deed, better even than spending gold or killing your enemies in battle. So, we can see how the meritorious nature of the Dhikr is well grounded in the Qur’an and the Holy Sunnah of Rasoolallah (sallallahu alaihi wa aalihi wa sallam). The Ulema themselves have spoken at length for 14 centuries about these and other benefits of Dhikr; indeed whole volumes have been exhausted in the elucidation of this subject. Specific types of Dhikr are many in number and take different forms. The Beloved (sallallahu alaihi wa aalihi wa sallam) said; “ O Ali, the best of what I and all Prophets before me said is la ilaha illallah.” The salaah is a Dhikr, tilaawah al-Qur’an is Dhikr, reading Allah’s Names, glorifying Him, praising Him, etc on prayer beads or on the fingers, reciting Durood Shareef are all Dhikr. Anything that you recite that comes from the Qur’an or from the Sunnah of the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa aalihi wa sallam) is Dhikr. The salaah, for example, incorporates three different types of Dhikr Allah: the Dhikr of the tongue, since one is reciting ayaat, du’aas, praises and Durood, the Dhikr of the limbs since you are moving from one physical position to another to symbolise your obedience in acting upon the commands of Allah for the salaah and finally the Dhikr of the heart, since after all the tilaawah, sajdah, qiyaam, etc are ideally all just indications of the state of the heart itself i.e. submissive and attentive. Gatherings of Dhikr are organised on a weekly basis all over the world for the specific purpose of reciting Allah’s Names and to recite the kalima. These are amongst the most virtuous forms of Dhikr after the salaah since the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa aalihi wa sallam) said in a hadith related by Tirmidhi that the gardens of Paradise are the “circles of Dhikr.” One of the interpretations of this by Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali is exactly the sort of circles of Dhikr that we see carried out by the practitioners of the orthodox Sufi orders. Also, remembering Allah by His Names in a group multiplies the blessings enormously as we see in the hadith related by Al-Bukhari in which even the inattentive attendants of these circles are forgiven due to their blessed nature. The ideal state of a believer is one in which he is in a constant state of dhikr, however, this is not always easy. The daily chores of life, business, studying, and working all repeatedly try to pry a person’s attention from the Dhikr of Allah. It is indeed a great struggle, especially these days when even Muslims inadvertently hinder one from remembering Allah. The key is to, at the very minimum, keep the heart in a constant state of Dhikr so whether one is conducting a business transaction, lecturing a class, performing an operation or filing some papers one is always in a state of awareness of Allah’s Divine Presence. This is absolutely possible and after a bit of struggle one can achieve such a noble station. Keeping with the pious people of Dhikr is also crucial to help refresh your heart which is why we have to make that extra effort to go to Dhikr gatherings. Heedlessness and forgetfulness are our enemies: being heedless of Allah and forgetful of our coming transitions to our graves and Dhikr Allah is our weapon against these. Employ this weapon, brothers and sisters, and see the sweet heights you reach in this world and the next.
  13. Bismillahir*RaHmanir*RaHeem "And keep yourself (O Muhammad *saaws* patiently with those who call on their Lord (your companions who remember their Lord with glorification, praising in prayers, etc., and other righteous deeds, etc.) morning and afternoon, seeking His Face, and let not your eyes overlook them, desiring the pomp and glitter of the life of the world; and obey not him whose heart We have made heedless of Our Remembrance, one who follows his own lusts and whose affair (deeds) has been lost." Al-Quran: Surah 18: Al-Kahf ayat 28. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The Four Poisons Of The Heart Bismillaahir-RaHmaanir-RaHeem You should know that all acts of disobedience are poision to the heart and cause its sickness and ruin. They result in its will running off course, against that of Allah, and so its sickness festers and increases. Ibn al-Mubarak said: I have seen wrong actions killing hearts, And their degradation may lead to their bcoming addicted to them. Turning away from wrong actions gives life to the hearts, And opposing your self is best for it. Whoever is concerned with the health and life of his heart, must rid it of the effects of such poisons, and then protect it by avoiding new ones. If he takes any by mistake, then he should hasten to wipe out their effect by turning in repentance and seeking forgiveness from Allah, as well as by doing good deeds that will wipe out his wrong actions. By the four poisions we mean unnecessary talking, unrestrained glances, too much food, and keeping bad company. Of all the poisons, these are the most widespread and have the greatest effect on a heart's well-being. Unnecessary Talking It is reported in al-Musnad, on the authority of Anas, that the Prophet *saaws* said: "The faith of a servant is not put right until his heart is put right, and his heart is not put right until his tongue is put right."1 This shows that the Prophet *saaws* has made the purification of faith conditional on the purification of the heart, and the purification of the heart conditional on the purification of the tongue. At-Tirmidhi relates in a hadith on the authority of Ibn Umar: "Do not talk excessively without remembering Allah, because such excessive talk without the mention of Allah causes the heart to harden, and the person furthest from Allah is a person with a hard heart."2 Umar Ibn al-Khattab, may Allah be pleased with him, said: "A person who talks too much is a person who often makes mistakes, and someone who often makes mistakes, often has wrong actions. The Fire has a priority over such a freqent sinner."3 In a hadith related on the authority of Mu'adh, the Prophet *saaws* said, "Shall I not tell you how to control all that?" I said, "Yes do, O Messenger of Allah." So he held his tongue between his fingers, and then he said: "Restrain this." I said, "Oh Prophet of Allah, are we accountable for what we say?" He *saaws* said, "May your mother be bereft by your loss! Is there anything more than the harvest of the tongues that throws people on their faces (or he said 'on their noses') into the Fire?"4 What is meant here by 'the harvest of the tongues' is the punishment for saying forbidden things. A man, through his actions and words, sows the seeds of either good or evil. On the Day of Resurrection he harvests their fruits. Those who sow the seeds of good words and deeds harvest honour and blessings; those who sow the seeds of evil words and deeds reap only regret and remorse. A hadith related by Abu Huraira says, "What mostly causes people to be sent to the Fire are the two openings: the mouth and the private parts."5 Abu Huraira also related that the Messenger of Allah *saaws* said, "The servant speaks words, the consequences of which he does not realise, and for which he is sent down into the depths of the Fire further than the distance between the east and the west."6 The same hadith was transmitted by at-Tirmidhi with slight variations: "The servant says something that he thinks is harmless, and for which he will be plunged into the depths of the Fire as far as seventy autumns."7 Uqba ibn Amir said: "I said: "O Messenger of Allah, what is our best way of surviving?' He, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, replied: "Guard your tongue, make your house suffice for sheltering your privacy, and weep for your wrong actions."8 It has been related on the authority of Sahl ibn Sa'd that the Prophet *saaws* said, "Whoever can guarantee what is between his jaws and what is between his legs, I guarantee him the Garden."9 It has also been related by Abu Huraira, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Let whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day either speak good or remain silent."10 Thus talking can either be good, in which case it is commendable, or bad, in which case it is haram. The Prophet *saaws* said: "Everything the children of Adam say goes against them, except for their enjoining good and forbidding evil, and remembering Allah, Glorius and Might is He." This was reported by at-Tirmidhi and Ibn Ma'jah on the authority of Umm Habiba, may Allah be pleased with her.11 Umar ibn al-Khattab visited Abu Bakr, may Allah be pleased with them, and found him pulling his tongue with his fingers. Umar said "Stop! may Allah forgive you!" Abu Bakr replied; "This tongue has brought me to dangerous places."12 Abdullah ibn Mas'ud said: "By Allah, besides Whom no god exists, nothing deserves a long prison sentence more than my tongue." He also used to say: "O tongue, say good and you will profit;desist from saying evil things and you will be safe; otherwise you will find only regret." Abu Huraira reported that Ibn al-Abbas said: "A person will not feel greater fury or anger for any part of his body on the Day of Judgement more than what he will feel for his tongue, unless he only used it for saying or enjoining good." Al-Hassan said: "Whoever does not hold his tongue cannot understand his deen." The least harmful of a tongue's faults is talking about whatever does not concern it. The following hadith of the Prohet *saaws* is enough to indicate the harm of this fault: "One of the merits of a person's Islam is his abandoning what does not concer him."13 Abu Ubaida related that al-Hassan said: "One of the signs of Allah's abandoning a servant is His making him preoccupied with what does not concern him." Sahl said, "Whoever talks about what does not concern him is deprived of truthfulness." As we have already mentioned above, this is the least harmful of the tongue's faults. There are far worse things, like backbiting, gossipying, obscene and misleading talk, two-faced and hypocritical talk, showing off, quarrelling, bickering, singing, lying, mockery, derision and falsehood; and there are many more faults which can affect a servant's tongue, ruining his heart and causing him to lose both his happiness and pleasure in this life, and his success and profit in the next life. Allah is the One to Whom we turn for assistance Unrestrained Glances The unrestrained glance results in the one who looks becoming attracted to what he sees, and in the imprinting of an image of what he sees in his heart. This can result in several kinds of corruption in the heart of the servant. The following are a number of them::: It has been related that the Prophet *saaws* once said words to the effect: "The glance is a poisoned arrow of shaytan. Whoever lowers his gaze for Allah, He will bestow upon him a refreshing sweetness which he will find in his heart on the day that he meets Him."14 Shaytan enters with the glance, for he travels with it, faster than the wind blowing through an empty place. He makes what is seen appear more beautiful than it really is, and transforms it into an idol for the heart to worship. Then he promises it false rewards, lights the fire of desires within it, and fuels it with the wood of forbidden actions, which the servant would not have committed had it not been for this distorted image. This distracts the heart and makes it forget its more important concerns. It stands between it and them; and so the heart loses its straight path and falls into the pit of desire and ignorance. Allah, Mighty and Glorious is He, says: And do not obey anyone whose heart WE have made forgetful in remembering Us- who follows his own desires, and whose affair has exceeded all bounds. (18:28)--<* The unrestrained gaze causes all three afflications. It has been said that between the eye and the heart is an immediate connection; if the eyes are corrupted, then the heart follows. It becomes like a rubbish heap where all the dirt and filth and rottennes collect, and so there is no room for love for Allah, relating all matters to Him, awareness of being in His presence, and feeling joy at His proximity-only the opposite of these things can inhabit such a heart. Staring and gazing without restraint is disobedience to Allah: Tell the believing men to lower their gaze and quard their modesty; that is more purifying for them. Surely Allah is aware of what they do. (24:30) Only the one who obeys Allah's commands is content in this world, and only the servant who obeys Allah will survive in the next world. Furthermore, letting the gaze roam free cloaks the heart with darkness, just as lowering the gaze for Allah clothes it in light. After the above ayah, Allah, the Glorious and Mighty, says in the same surah of the the Qur'an: Allah is the light of the heavens and the earth: the likeness of His light is as if there were a niche, and in the niche is a lamp, and in the lamp is a glass, and the glass as it were a brilliant star, lit from a blessed tree, an olive, neither of the east nor of the west, whose oil is well nigh luminous, though fire scarce touched it. Light upon light. 'Allah guides whomever He wants to His Light. Allah strikes metaphors for man; and Allah knows all things. (24:35) When the heart is a light, countless good comes to it from all directions. If it is dark, then clouds of evil and afflictions come from all directions to cover it up. Letting the gaze run loose also makes the heart blind to distinguishing between truth and falsehood, between the sunnah and innovation; while lowering it for Allah, the Might and Exalted, gives it a penetrating, true and distinguishing insight. A righteous man once said: "Whoever enriches his outward behaviour by follwing the sunnah, and makes his inward soul weathy thorugh contemplation, and averts his gaze away from looking at what is forbidden, and avoids anything of a doubtful nature, and feeds soley on what is halal-his inner sight will never falter." Rewards for actions come in kind. Whoever lowers his gaze from what Allah has forbidden, Allah will give his inner sight abundant light. ***Too much Food, Keeping Bad Company, and What Gives the Heart Life and Sustence from this chapter, will be sent tommorrow by the will of Allah*** Too Much Food The consumption of small amounts of food guarantees tenderness of the heart, strenght of the intellect, humility of the self, weakness of desires, and gentleness of temperament. Immoderate eating brings about the opposite of these praiseworthy qualities. Al-Miqdam ibn Ma'd Yakrib said: "I heard the Messenger of Allah *saaws* say: "THe son of Adam fills no vessel more displeasing to Allah than his stomach. A few morsels should be enough for him to preserve his strength. If he must fil it, then he should allow a third for his food, a third for his drink and leave a third empty for easy breathing."15 Excessive eating induces many kinds of harm. It makes the body incline towards disobedience to Allah and makes worship and obedience seem laborious-such evils are bad enough in themselves. A full stomach and excessive eating have caused many a wrong action and inhibited much worship. Whoever safeguards against the evils of overfilling his stomach has prevented great evil. It is easier for shaytan to control a person who has filled his stomach with food and drink, which is why it has often been said: "Restrict the pathways of shaytan by fasting."16 It has been reported that when a group of young men from the Tribe of Israel were worshipping, and it was time for them to break their fast, a man stood up and said: "Do not eat too much, otherwise you will drink too much, and then you will end up sleeping too much, and then you will lose too much." The Prophet *saaws* and his companions, may Allah be pleased with them, used to go hungry quite frequently. Although this was often due to a shortage of food, Allah decreed the best and most favourable conditions for His Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. This is why Ibn Umar and his father before him-in spite of the abundance of food available to them-modelled their eating habits on those of the Prophet *saaws*. It has been reported that Aisha, may Allah be pleased with her, said: "From the time of their arrival in Madina up until his death *saaws*, the family of Muhammed *saaws* never ate their fill of bread made from wheat three nights in a row."17 Ibrahim ibn Adham said: "Any one who controls his stomach is in control of his deen, and anyone who controls his hunger is in control of good behaviour. Disobedience towardsions we mean unnecessary talkingo is satiated with a full stomach, and furthest away from a person who is hungry." Keeping Bad Company Unnecessary companionship is a chronic disease that causes much harm. How often have the wrong kind of companionship and intermixing deprived people of Allah's generosity, planting discord in their hearts which even the passage of time-even if it were long enough for mountains to be worn away-has been unable to dispel. In keeping such company one can find the roots of loss, both in this life and in the next life. A servant should benefit from companionship. In order to do so he should divide people into four categories, and be careful not to get them mixed up, for once one of them is mixed with another, then evil can find its way through to him: The *FIRST* category are those people whose company is like food: it is indispensable, night or day. Once a servant has taken his need from it, he leaves it be until he requires it again, and so on. These are the people with knowledge of Allah-of His commands, of the scheming of His enemies, and of the diseases of the heart and their remedies- who wish well for Allah, His Prophet *saaws* and His servants. Associating with this type of person is an achievement in itself. The *SECOND* category are those people whose company is like a medicine. They are only required when a disease sets in. When you are healthy, you have no need of them. However, mixing with them is sometimes necessary for your livelihood, businesses, consultation and the like. Once what you need from them has been fulfilled, mixing with them should be avoided. The *THIRD* category are those people whose company is harmful. Mixing with this type of person is like a disease, in all its variety and degrees and strengths and weaknesses. Associating with one or some of them is like an incurable chronic disease. You will never profit either in this life or in the next life if you have them for company, and you will surely lose either one or both of your deen and your livelihood because of them. If their companionship has taken hold of you and is established, then it becomes a fatal, terrifying sickness. Amongst such people are those who neither speak any good that might benefit you, nor listen cloesly to you so that they might benefit from you. They do not know their souls and consequently put their selves in their rightful place. If they speak, their words fall on their listeners' hearts like the lashes of a cane, while all the while they are full of admiration for and delight in their own words. They cause distress to those in their company, while believing that they are the sweet scent of the gathering. If they are silent, they are heavier than a massive millstone-too heavy to carry or even drag across the floor. 18 All in all, mixing with anyone who is bad for the soul will not last, even if it is unavoidable. It can be one of the most distressing aspects of a servant's life that he is plagued by such person, with whom it may be necessary to associate. In such a relationship, a servant should cling to good behaviour, only presenting him with his outward appearance, while disguising his inner soul, until Allah offers him a way out of his affliction and the means of escape from this situation. The *FOURTH* category are those people whose company is doom itself. It is like taking poision: its victim either finds an antidote or perishes. Many people belong to this category. They are the people of religious innovation and misguidance, those who abandon the sunnah of the Messenger of Allah *saaws* and advocate other beliefs. They call what is the sunnah a bid'a and vice-versa. A man with any intellect should not sit in their assemblies nor mix with them. The result of doing so will either be the death of his heart or, at the very best, its falling seriously ill. What Gives the Heart Life and Sustenance You should know that acts of obedience are essential to the well being of the servant's heart, just in the same way that food and drink are to that of the body. All wrong actions are the same as poisonous foods, and they inevitably harm the heart. The servant feels the need to worship his Lord, Mighty and Glorious is He, for he is naturally in constant need of His help and assistance. In order to maintain the well being of his body, the servant carefully follows a strict diet. He habitually and constantly eats good food at regular intervals, and is quick to free his stomach of harmful elements if he happens to eat bad food by mistake. The well being of the servant's heart, however, is far more important than that of his body, for while the well being of his body enables him to lead a life that is free from illnesses in this world, that of the heart ensures him both a fortunate life in this world and eternal bliss in the next. In the same way, while the death of the body cuts the servant off from this world, the death of the heart results in everlasting anguish. A righteous man once said, "How odd, that some people mourn for the one whose body has died, but never mourn for the one whose heart has died-and yet the death of the heart is far more serious!" Thus acts of obedience are indispensable to the well being of the heart. It is worthwhile mentioning the following acts of obedience here, since they are very necessary and essential for the servant's heart: ---Dhikr of Allah ta'Ala, recitation of the Noble Qur'an, seeking Allah's forgiveness, making du'as, invoking Allah's blessings and peace on the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and praying at night.* Notes: 1. Da'if hadith, Al-Mundhari, 3/234; and al-Iraqi in al-Ihya, 8/1539. 2. Da'if hadith, at-Tirmdihi, Kitab az-Zuhud, 7/92, gharib; no one else has transmitted it other than Ibrahim ibn Abdullah ibn Hatib, whom ath-Thahabi mentions, 1/43, stating that this is one of the gharib hadith attributed to him. 3. Da'if hadith, Ibn Hibban and al-Baihaqi, and al-Iraqi in his edition of al-Ihya, 8/1541. 4. Sahih hadith, at-Tirmidhi, al-Hakim, ath-Thahabi. 5. Sahih hadith, at-Tirmidhi and Ahmad; also al-Hakum and ath-Thahabi. 6. Al-Bukhari in Kitab ar-Riqaq, and Muslim in Kitab az-Zuhud. 7. At-Tirmdihi, Kitab az-Zuhud; he said the hadith is hasan gharib. 8. At-Tirmdihi in Kitab az-Zuhud with a slightly different wording; he said the hadith is hasan. This wording is reported by Abu Na'im in al-Hilya. 9. Al-Buhhari, Kitab ar-Riqaq, 11/308 and Kitab al-Hudud, 12/113. 10. Al-Bukhari, Kitab ar-Riqaq, 11/308; Muslim, Kitab al-Iman, 2/18. The complete hadith is: "Let whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day either speak good or remain silent; and let whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day be generous to his neighbour; and let whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day be generous to his guest." 11. THe hadith is hasan and is reported by at-Tirmdhi in Kitab az-Zuhud and by Ibn Majah in Kitab al-Fitan. At-Tirmidhi classifies it as hasan gharib. We have no report of it other than from Muhammad ibn Yazid ibn Khanis. 12. Hasan according to Abu Ya'la, Baihaqi and as-Suyuti. Musnad, 1/201; as-Sa'ati. 13. Sahih, at-Tirmdhi, Kitab az-Zuhud, 6/607; Ahmad, al-Musnad, 1/201; as-Sa'ati, al-Fath ar-Rabbani, 19/257; hadith number 12 in an-Nawawi's Forty Hadiths. 14. Da'if, at-Tabarani, 8/63; al-Hakim, al-Mustadrak, 4/314; Ahmad, al-Musnad, 5/264. 15. Sahih, Ahmad, al-Musnad, 4/132; as-Sa'ati, al-Fath ar-Rabbani, 17/88; at-Tirmidhi, Kitab az-Zuhud, 7/51. 16. Da'if; it does not appear in most of the sources of the sunnah, but is mentioned in al-Ghazzali's al-Ihya, 8/1488. 17. Al-Bukhari, Kitab al-At'ima, 9/549; and Muslim, Kitab az-Zuhud, 8/105. 18. Ash-Shafi', may Allah be pleased with him, is reported to have said, "Whenever a tedious person sits next to me, the side on which he is sitting feels lower down than the other side of me." -------=-The Purification of the Soul-=--------------------- from the works of Ibn Rajab Al-Hanbabli, Ibn Al-Qayyim al-Jawziyaa, and Abu Hamid al-Ghazali ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
  14. Bismillahir*RaHmanir*RaHeem "He it is Who sent down As-Sakinah (calmness and tranquillity) into the hearts of the believers, that they may grow more in Faith along with their (present) Faith. And to Allah belong the hosts of the heavens and the earth, and Allah is Ever Al-Knower, All-Wise." Al-Quran: Surah 48: Al-Fath ayat 4. Four-Symptoms Of the Heart's Sickness & Signs of Its Health Bismillaahir-RaHmaanir-RaHeem The Signs of a Sick Heart A servant's heart may be ill, and seriously deteriorating, while he remains oblivious of its condition. It may even die without him realising it. The symptoms of its sickness, or the signs of its death, are that its owner is not aware of the harm that results from the damage caused by wrong actions, and is unperturbed by his ignorance of the truth or by his false beliefs. Since the living heart experiences pain as a result of any ugliness that it encounters and through its recognising its ignorance of the truth (to a degree that corresponds to its level of awareness), it is capable of recognising the onset of decay-and the increase in the severity of the remedy that will be needed to stop it-but then sometimes it prefers to put up with the pain rather than undergo the arduous trial of the cure! Some of the many signs of the heart's sickness if its turning away from good foods to harmful ones, from good remedies to shameful sickness. The healthy heart prefers what is beneficial and healing to what is harmful and damaging; the sick heart prefers the opposite. The most beneficial sustenance for the heart is faith and the best medicine is the Qur'an. The Signs of a Healthy Heart For the heart to be healthy it should depart from this life and arrive in the next, and then settle there as if it were one of its people; it only came to this life as a passer-by, taking whatever provisions it needed and then returning home. As the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said to Abdullah ibn Umar, "Be in this world as if you were a stranger or a passer-by."1 The More diseased the heart is, the more it desires this world; it dwells in it until it becomes like one of its people. The healthy heart continues to trouble its owner until he returns to Allah, and is at peace with Him, and joins Him, like a lover driven by compulsion who finally reaches his beloved. Besides his love for Him he needs no other, and after invoking Him no other invocations are needed. Serving Him precludes the need to serve any other. If this heart misses its share of reciting the Qur'an and invoking Allah, or completing one of the prescribed acts of worship, then its owner suffers more distress than a cautious man who suffers because of the loss of money or a missed opportunity to make it. It longs to serve, just as a famished person longs for food and drink. Yahya ibn Mu'adh said: "Whoever is pleased with serving Allah, everything will be pleased to serve him; and whoever finds pleasure in contemplating Allah, all the people will find pleasure in contemplating him." This heart has only one concern: that all its actions, and its inner thoughts and utterances, are obedient to Allah. It is more careful with its time than the meanest people are with their money, so that it will not be spent wastefully. When it enters into the prayer, all its worldly worries and anxieties vanish and it finds its comfort and bliss in adoring its Lord. It does not cease to mention Allah, nor tire of serving Him, and it finds intimate company with no-one save a person who guides it to Allah and reminds it to Him. Its attention to the correctness of its action is greater than its attention to the action itself. It is scrupulous in making sure that the intentions behind its actions are sincere and pure and that they result in good deeds. As well as and in spite of all this, it not only testifies to the generosity of Allah in giving it the opportunity to carry out such actions, but also testifies to its own imperfection and shortcomings in executing them. The Causes of Sickness of the Heart The temptations to which the heart is exposed are what cause its sickness. These are the temptations of desires and fancies. The former cause intentions and the will to be corrupted, and the latter cause knowledge and belief to falter. Hudhayfa ibn al-Yamani, may Allah be pleased with him, said: "The Messenger of Allah *saaws* said, "Temptations are presented to the heart, one by one. Any heart that accepts them will be left with a black stain, but any heart that rejects them will be left with a mark of purity, so that hearts are of two types: a dark heart that has turned away and becom like an overturned vessel, and a pure heart that will never be harmed by temptation for as long as the earth and the heavens exist. The dark heart only recognises good and denounces evil when this suits its desires and whims." 2 He, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, placed hearts, when exposed to temptation, into two categories First, a heart which, when it is exposed to temptation, absorbs it like a sponge that soaks up water, leaving a black stain in it. It continues to absorb each temptation that is offered to it until it is darkened and corrupted, which is what he meant by "like an overturned vessel". When this happens, two dangerous sicknesses take hold of it and plunge it into ruin: The first is that of its confusing good with evil, to such an extent that it does not recognise the former and does not denounce the latter. This sickness may even gain hold of it to such an extent that it believes good to be evil and vice-versa, the sunnah to be bida' and vice-versa, the truth to be false and falsity to be the truth. The second is that of its setting up its desires as its judge, over and above what the Prophet *saaws* taught, so that it is enslaved and led by its whims and fancies. Second, a pure heart which the light of faith is bright and from which its radiance shines. When temptation is presented to pure hearts such this, they oppose it and reject it, and so their light and illumination only increase.* Notes: 1. Al-Bukhari, Kitab ar-Riqaq, 11/233. 2. Muslim, Kitab al-Iman, 2/170 (with different wording). The Purification of the Soul from the works of Ibn Rajab Al-Hanbabli, Ibn Al-Qayyim al-Jawziyaa, and Abu Hamid al-Ghazali
  15. Just as the heart may be described in terms of being alive or dead, it may also be regarded as belonging to one of three types; these are the healthy heart, the dead heart, and the sick heart. The Healthy Heart On the Day of Resurrection, only those who come to Allah with a healthy heart will be saved. Allah says: "The day on which neither wealth nor sons will be of any use, except for whoever brings to Allah a sound heart. (26:88-89)" In defining the healthy heart, the following has been said: "It is a heart cleansed from any passion that challenges what Allah commands, or disputes what He forbids. It is free from any impulses which contradict His good. As a result, it is safeguarded against the worship of anything other than Him, and seeks the judgement of no other except that of His Messenger (saw). Its services are exclusively reserved for Allah, willingly and lovingly, with total reliance, relating all matters to Him, in fear, hope and sincere dedication. When it loves, its love is in the way of Allah. If it detests, it detests in the lght of what He detests. When it gives, it gives for Allah. If it witoholds, it withholds for Allah. Nevertheless, all this will not suffice for its salvation until it is free from following, or taking as its guide, anyone other than His Messenger (saw)." A servant with a healthy heart must dedicate it to its journey's end and not base his actions and speech on those of any other person except Allah's Messenger (saw). He must not give precedence to any other faith or words or deeds over those of Allah and His Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. Allah says: "Oh you who believe, do not put yourselves above Allah and His Messenger, but fear Allah, for Allah is Hearing, Knowing. (49:1)" The Dead Heart This is the opposite of the healthy heart. It does not know its Lord and does not worship Him as He commands, in the way which He likes, and with which He is pleased. It clings instead to its lusts and desires, even if these are likely to incur Allah's displeasure and wrath. It worships things other than Allah, and its loves and its hatreds, and its giving and its withholding, arise from its whims, which are of paramount importance to it and preferred above the pleasure of Allah. Its whims are its imam. Its lust is its guide. Its ignorance is its leader. Its crude impulses are its impetus. It is immersed in its concern with worldly objectives. It is drunk with its own fancies and its love for hasty, fleeting pleasures. It is called to Allah and the akhira from a distance but it does not respond to advice, and instead it follows any scheming, cunning shayton. Life angers and pleases it, and passion makes it deaf and blind (1) to anything except what is evil. To associate and keep company with the owner of such a heart is to tempt illness: living with him is like taking poison, and befriending him means utter destruction. The Sick Heart Thisi s a heart with life in it, as well as illness. The former sustains it at one moment, the latter at another, and it follows whichever one of the two manages to dominate it. It has love for Allah, faith in Him, sincerity towards Him, and reliance upon Him, and these are what give it life. It also has a craving for lust and pleasure, and prefers them and strives to experience them. It is full of self-admiration, which can lead to its own destruction. It listens to two callers: one calling it to Allah and His Prophet (saw) and the akhira; and the other calling it to the fleeting pleasures of this world. It responds to whichever one of the two happens to have most influence over it at the time. The first heart is alive, submitted to Allah, humble, sensitive and aware; the second is brittle and dead; the third wavers between either its safety or its ruin. Notes: 1. It has been related on the authority of Abu'd-Darda' that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Your love for something that makes you blind and deaf." Abu Daw'ud, al-Adab, 14/38; Ahmad, al-Musnad, 5/194. The hadith is classified as hasan.
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