The Cure For Fitnah
Tuesday 15th September 2020
27th Muharram 1442
نحمده و نصلى على رسوله الكريم،
قال الله تعالى فى القرآن المجيد،
أعوذ بالله من الشيطان الرجيم
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
إنّ الله وملإٍٰکتہ یصلّون على النّبى يا أيها الذين آمنوا صلّوا عليه و سلِّموا تسليما
الّلهم صلى على سيدنا ومولانا محمد معدن الجود والکرم
الّلهم صلى على سيدنا ومولانا محمدو الہ ألف الف مرّة
الّلهم صلى على سيدنا ومولانا محمد وآله وأصحابه وبارك وسلم
أعوذ بالله من الشيطان الرجيم
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
وَٱسۡتَعِينُواْ بِٱلصَّبۡرِ وَٱلصَّلَوٰةِۚ وَإِنَّهَا لَكَبِيرَةٌ إِلَّا عَلَى ٱلۡخَٰشِعِينَ
And seek help through patience and prayer. Indeed, it is very difficult except for the Kashi’een
(Surah Al Baqarah, verse 45)
We now continue from the subject of how Allah subhana wa ta’ala sent human beings to this Earth. This is a topic at the beginning of the Qur’an where it was mentioned how Shaytaan was expelled and removed from a very high status and also how he vowed to mislead mankind. It was a mission for which sought the permission of Allah. He requested a period of time and he was granted a period of time. To this day, Shaytaan continues to try and mislead mankind. His mission to try and take as much of mankind as possible into the Hellfire with him is currently ongoing and his efforts to achieve his evil objective are in full force.
While Shaytaan is busy in his evil work, Allah subhana wa ta’ala created a beautiful solution for mankind by which they can save themselves.
While Shaytaan was busy inviting people towards evil, Allah created Da’wah (invitation towards goodness.) This is in direct opposition to Shaytaan and Shaytaan cannot compete with the Da’wah and tableegh of the Messengers, Prophets and the friends of Allah.
Shaytaan tried his best to take people towards sin and shirk and tried to lead them towards Jahannum. And whenever it seemed to Shaytaan as if he was completely succeeding, Allah subhana wa ta’ala would send a Prophet or a Messenger in that time to invite the people towards Allah and towards goodness. The coming of Prophets to guide humanity all began with Adam alayhi salaam. And Allah has informed this Ummah regarding many of the events that happened to the previous nations.
The Qur’an tells us of nations that had strayed from Allah’s path and how He sent His Prophets to guide them. These recorded events are all signs and examples for us so that we can comprehend what happens to those who disobey Allah and what happens to those who follow His Messengers and turn to goodness.
My friends, the Qur’an is not just for reciting during taraweeh. It is a message from Allah. A message that we must try to understand and implement in our lives. The Qur’an was revealed to the Final Messenger sallallahu alayhi wa sallam and it contains complete guidance for humanity.
Allah informs this Ummah regarding the previous nations and the Prophets that were sent to guide them. He informs us that we can learn and take heed and improve our lives and our Akhirah. The purpose of the Qur’an is to save us from Shaytaan and take us towards Ar-Rahman. However Shaytaan tries all sorts of tricks and schemes to mislead mankind and one of those is to give people false interpretations of the Qur’an, he presents the Qur’an out of context or even tells people that certain verses are not important etc. He encourages people to pick and choose what to follow and in this way they form their own version of Islam which is different to the true message from Allah. Some people will now even manipulate verses of the Qur’an to try and prove other Muslims not be Muslims etc. This was not the purpose of the Qur’an.
Insha’allah, I will read the Qur’an from the beginning to the end in the context in which it was revealed and take the true guidance from it that Allah has given us. We will neither reject nor add any verses and present them with relevance to how they guide a Muslim in this day and age.
The style of the Qur’an is such that each verse is full of truth and guidance. And it is a cure for mankind. It provides solutions to people from every era and time including today. Subhanallah, the Qur’an will give us a message that will be relevant to the conditions that we face on this exact day. Whether it be a political situation or a situation in the home, the Qur’an will guide us and inform us of the best way to approach that situation. Our problem is that we read the Qur’an with an agenda. We do not go to it with the intention of guidance but with the intention of trying to prove others wrong and increasing enmity between mankind and that is the work of Shaytaan. Approach the Qur’an with love for the Deen and love for humanity and the message you will get will be entirely different.
When a Qari’ recites the Qur’an we enjoy the beautiful sound and melody, which is fine but we must not forget that what he is reciting are the words of Allah who is addressing us directly in that message.
It is nice to hear the Qur’an in this manner, but remember that this is not the purpose of the Qur’an. It was not revealed for our entertainment. It was revealed for our guidance. We have been listening to the Qur’an for many weeks now and verse after verse it is the same message calling us towards Allah and guiding us on how to live in this world.
Alhamdulillah this message has reached us, and from this message of Allah we can look at our lives and correct ourselves in all those areas that we need to improve. The events that occurred with the previous nations are not tales or stories for our entertainment in fact they are true happenings that we have been informed of so we can take heed.
The Qur’an tells us that Shaytaan would influence these nations so much that they would forget Allah and over time create a culture of sin, negligence and transgression. And each time these nations reached this stage of disobedience to Allah, Allah subhana wa ta’ala sent a Prophet or Messenger to guide them back to Him. A generation of people would follow the Prophet, but then again as time would pass and the people would gradually turn away again until Allah would send another Prophet to guide them. And this cycle continued until Allah subhana wa ta’ala sent His final Prophet and Messenger sallallahu alayhi wa sallam.
And since this is the Ummah of the Final Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, it has been given a certain unique capacity and quality. That quality is that Allah will create people in this Ummah who will not be Prophets but will do the work of the Prophets by inviting people towards Allah and His obedience. Remember that this task has not been assigned to any one single group of Muslims. In fact every believer in this Ummah has the capacity to invite people towards Allah. And it is something that is a gift from Allah, and some even have this gift from childhood.
A person may want to make their child an Aalim, A Qari, and make efforts to educate them so that they can become a Daa’i, which is fine but if Allah does not will it we will not be able to make them what we want them to be by force. It is truly a selection from Allah. Many people study to become scholars but not all are chosen by Allah to serve as propagators of the Deen.
Those parents whose children have studied and become scholars should be very grateful to Allah that Allah has given them this knowledge. When a child becomes an Aaalim, consider that Allah has assigned him with a responsibility to fulfil the right of the knowledge that he has gained. Parents may feel proud of their own efforts to get the child to that stage but remember that none of this would have been possible without the will of Allah.
When a child gets in the habit and practise of learning he begins to absorb knowledge rapidly because he has been selected by Allah for this knowledge. Remember that it is our duty as parents to teach our children the etiquettes of the Deen and to instil in them a passion, enthusiasm and desire to learn and follow the Deen of Allah. And if we ignore this responsibility then we are inviting the punishment of Allah for ungratefulness. This punishment can come in many forms including in this Dunya. One form could be that our children become disobedient and our homes become devoid of blessings such that we have lives that have no peace.
The Tarbiyyah (Nurturing) of the child is the responsibility of the parents. A child is a gift and a great treasure if we fulfil the rights as parents by bringing the child up in the manner that Allah wants us to. A child is like a piece of wood from a tree which has so much potential, but for this wood to achieve its potential it needs a carpenter or a special craftsman to take the wood to its potential and carve a beautiful object from it. In the same way the parents are the craftspeople for their children.
Both male and female scholars of the Deen are selected by Allah for the purpose of serving Allah in inviting humanity to goodness. And this was the mission of the Prophets. Hence parents will need to work hard to raise their children in a way that they are neither spoilt nor unloved. Do not be a failure as parents to your children because every person in this Ummah has the potential and skill to do this work. Remember that this responsibility of Da’wah does not lie with only on jama’at. Every believer, whether they be male or female can do this work of the Deen.
The Tableeghi jamaa’at have mashallah developed an organised way and system by which they do their work but it is not their sole responsibility to spread Islam. We too must do the work of the Deen. When a child is born and we are celebrating by distributing sweets we should at that time also make dua saying, “O Allah, make this child tread Your path, and invite others towards You and the Deen.” Then after that continue to educate the child with love and encouragement and he will insha’allah attain the skills and qualities necessary to become an Aaalim. Then as he grows we will need to protect the child from sins as a person protects a priceless jewel from thieves.
When a child grows into an adult who becomes a daa’i, someone who commits his life by using his knowledge to invite others to Islam. It is then that the parents will be considered to have attained the objective and goal for the efforts for an immense reward awaits them from Allah subhana wa ta’ala. And even then the parents remain humble and do not show off.
The objective is not to make your child a beautiful reciter of the Qur’an so that you can show-off his recitation skills and nor is it the objective to gain some kind of social standing in the community. My brothers try to understand the message of the Qur’an.
In the verse that was recited today, Allah subhana wa ta’ala directs us towards a tool that we must use to oppose Shaytaan. Da’awah to the Deen of Allah is hated by Shaytaan. Now I am talking about all da’wah, in all its forms. Remember that the work of Da’wah starts from the home. It starts with the parents who nurture their children and raise them upon the Deen. And when they become adults they go forward and do the work of the Deen. They become of those who invite people towards Allah. This is a system to protect the Deen that Allah has created. After Allah’s Messenger sallallahu alayhi wa sallam left this Dunya the Deen of Allah would still remain with people throughout the generations because it has been made our collective responsibility to preserve it by passing the knowledge onwards from one generation to the next.
However many of us are not fulfilling this responsibility. The production line of Aalims is continuing but many of these products are faulty due to not having the correct goals and objectives.
Remember that this work starts in the home with the parents. And then, when the child is old enough, he learns the Zahiri knowledge from the Ulamaa and attains the manners and Batini knowledge required to become a humble human being from the company of the blessed Mashaa’ikh. And it is then that they do that work which was the work of the Prophets.
When this work stops, it gradually creates fasaad and disorder, people begin to bring in new practises and rituals into the religion, and over time they become far from the Deen. The Deen splits into many sects and even then the true practise of the Deen will be nowhere to be seen. When this happened with former nations, Allah would send a Prophet among them to guide them back to Allah. Since there will be no more Prophets, every human being in this Ummah has the potential to do this work of the Deen and it starts in the home with the parents.
Now, in many instances a person may have the knowledge required to do this work but is unable to do it. For example he may have the physical skills required such as the knowledge and the skill of delivering good speeches, but he may not have amal upon this knowledge in his own life. And this can become a big obstacle. When a person’s speech is opposite to his actions he is not a true da’ee. The true Deen requires a person to be honest, truthful and without hypocrisy. When the Scholars behave in a manner that opposes the teachings of the Deen then it creates even more fasaad in society than you can imagine. When the scholars do not address the ills of society and make no mention of them in their speeches then these ills continue to spread throughout the society. When we see something wrong and evil happening in our society, then it becomes the duty of those who know the difference between right and wrong i.e. the Ulema to at least mention it their teachings. As it is stated in a Hadeeth in Saheeh Muslim:
عن أبي سعيد الخدري رضي الله عنه قال: سمعت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يقول: "من رأى منكم منكرًا فليغيره بيده ، فإن لم يستطع فبلسانه، فإن لم يستطع فبقلبه وذلك أضعف الإيمان"
Abu Sa'id Al-Khudri radhiallah anhu reported that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ said (to his companions), "Whoever amongst you sees an evil, he must change it with his hand; if he is unable to do so, then with his tongue (i.e. to speak up and say that it is wrong); and if he is unable to do so, then with his heart (i.e. think of it as a bad thing in your heart); and that is the weakest form of Faith".
It is the lowest level of Iman to accept an evil action to be a wrongful thing in our hearts. But unfortunately society has reached a stage that we do not even consider in our hearts for many sins to be wrongful deeds. When we consider bad things to be good or to be the accepted norm, then we are inadvertently co-operating with and helping to spread that action in society.
Sometimes we may say something is wrong, yet accept it to be fine in our hearts and that also has the same effect of co-operation. In a Hadeeth in Tirmidhi, narrated by Abu Umaamah radhiallah anhu, it is mentioned that when society embraces wrongful actions, then such a punishment descends on their hearts at Allah does not accept their duas.
Now the example of stopping evil with the hands is that of a mother and father seeing their child do something sinful in the home. Then a person can explain to his child verbally the differences between right and wrong, between good deeds and sinful deeds and this is the responsibility of the parents. And it is the case that we want our children to grow up to be pious human beings, yet our own actions do not match what we say and demand of our children.
It will not matter how much effort is made on a child but if the parents in the home are neglectful of their prayers, they will not achieve their objective. This is because the child is a reflection of the amal of the parents. Despite his knowledge he will not be the perfect human being they had hoped for. Salaah is a great deed that cannot be neglected. When a child sees that his father or mother do not pray then this will pour water over the efforts of the Huffaaz and Ulema who educate the child. If your efforts on your child are contrary to your own actions then it will have a distinct negative effect on your child.
Remember that the first deed that you need to establish in your home is Salaah. Once a father went to a pious man and complained to him about his child. He complained that he had placed so much effort and attention on the child to make him an Alim and a Haafidh but now this same child had started smoking cannabis and was not showing much interest in what he had learned from the private Madrassahs that he had been attending. The pious man replied, “Have you not read in the Qur’an the importance of establishing Salaah?” The man replied, “Yes I have, but I am lazy regarding it at times.” The pious man said, “Then that is your answer, you are the parent, and if you and your wife too are not steadfast in Salaah, then this has had an adverse effect on your child. Rectify your prayers that is the solution.”
The meaning of ‘Establishing Salaah’ for an able adult male is to attend the Masjid in congregation for Fardh Salaah, and for a woman to pray all her prayers at the correct times. It should be visible and clear to the children that their parents pray their Salaah in this manner. If you have this kind of lifestyle then it will have an automatic positive effect on the child. When our actions and our words are both the same, it is then that our children will experience a home free of contradictions and hypocrisy. And when they have such steadfast parents, it will inevitably pull them towards Allah. But when they are not brought up in this environment, even if they become Aaalims they may not preach the truth and instead cause mischief in the community.
In Bukhari and Muslim there is a Hadeeth narrated by Hadhrat Usama bin Zayd radhiallah anhu. This Hadeeth mentions the punishment for exhorting good and at the same time doing evil. A person who said good words but opposed them in his actions would be in the Hellfire and his intestines will hang out from a tear on his belly and he will run around in Hell like an animal on the loose (in his pain). The people of the Hellfire will look at him in amazement and say to him, “You were a scholar in the Dunya and delivered many speeches and talks, so what happened to you to bring into here in this condition?” He will reply. “Yes it is true, I would tell people to do good things, but I had no practice upon it myself.”
Now this Hadeeth does not only apply to scholars who do not practise what they preach but also to parents who tell their children to be good but they themselves keep committing those sins that they warn their children not to do. And in fact it refers to all people who do not practise the good deeds that they tell other people to do.
And when this behaviour becomes common place in society, then the whole society begins to crumble (spiritually). Hence this is a very big message for us that we need to understand.
We must understand that first we must do the good deed ourselves so that we are able to exhort others. And for parents it is not even a choice. We must have amal upon all those good things that we want, hope and expect from our children. We must lead by example and show our children how to establish prayer by demonstration.
I have known of homes where one child through the fadhal of Allah manages to bring correction to a whole household. The parents would not pray and occupy their time with things such as going to the cinema etc, and then they had a child. When they had a child they began to discuss how they needed to make changes in their life to accommodate this child and how they needed to change their ways to give the child an environment by which he or she can grow to be a good human being. Remember that parents have this in-built desire for their children to be good and pious human beings. And this is a good desire of the parents, however, Junyad Baghdadi rahmatullah alayhi stated that in order for this desire to become a reality the mother and father must make an effort to become pious themselves. When the parents are pious he gains so much more from the actions of his parents than he can from reading books.
Do not waste the knowledge that you have paid for to madrassahs to educate your children by having no amal yourselves. Apart from lying, fighting with relatives, talking nonsense, quarrelling with each other and swearing in front of our children we also openly disobey Allah in front of them. So how do we expect our children to become pious human beings when we are providing them with an environment like this?
Now some may say that they have educated their children and guided them to a good future and career. But remember even in the Dunya there is a cycle whereby after some years of service, even the highest ranked of officers will reach a time when he has to retire and make way for another. So remember that true tarbiyyah of the children is done by example. Do not become that person running around like an animal on the loose in the Hellfire whose actions were in opposition to what he preached.
So when the parents had a child they made an intention that Allah has given us this child, and we will make an effort to raise him with piety so that he can become a pious human being. Remember that many a friend of Allah was raised by pious parents, Junayd Baghdadi rahmatullah alayhi and the likes of Abdul Qadir Jilani rahmatullah alayhi were raised by pious people and pious mothers. The potential and quality was within Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilani, however if you look at the history you will find that it was his mother who nurtured him with Ikhlas and piety with which he became the Ghawth-ul-Azam.
So when the parents decided to repent from the sins in their lives and started praying Salaah, and following the Sunnah, they raised a child who became pious due to the environment that he was given by his parents.
Now it has also become customary to complain and blame the teacher in the Madrassah when the child comes home and does not show signs of piety. Some parents seem to think that because they are paying a Maulana to teach their child it somehow becomes the sole responsibility of that Maulana to make their child pious.
I was saying that a major cause of fitnah in this world is people not practising what they preach. A distinct contrast in what we do and what we say. Now the question arises is why do we do this? Why is it that we do not practise what preach? What takes us towards sin when we preach the opposite? It is two things: The love of the Dunya and the desire to live forever in this Dunya. Our desires for material benefits and the material gains of this world are a huge obstacle on the path to piety. May Allah forgive us and save us from this love of the Dunya.
When a person immerses himself in the love of the Dunya he forgets all the things that are important for his Akhirah.
There is a Hadeeth in Tirmidhi regarding the condition of the Dunya:
وعن أبي هُرَيْرَة رضي اللَّه عنه ، قال : سمعتُ رسولَ اللَّه صَلّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وسَلَّم يقول ألا إن الدنيا ملعونة، ملعون ما فيها، إلا ذكر الله تعالى، وما والاه، وعالماً ومتعلماً"
Abu Hurayrah radhiallah anhu relates that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ said, "The world, with all that it contains, is accursed except for the dhikr of Allah and that which is (done in obedience) for Allah; and the learned people and the seekers of knowledge."
This Hadeeth tells us the priorities of our lives. Chasing the material gains of this Dunya with love for it in our hearts is an accursed position to be in.
Allah’s Messenger sallallahu alayhi wa sallam tells us that the virtuous things in the Dunya are the dhikr of Allah, the remembrance of Allah, the learning of the Deen of Allah with sincerity and those people who seek the knowledge of Allah for the sake of pleasing Allah and not for any material, fame or adulation. And these are the people who are wise with the time that Allah has given them on Earth.
A person who has the intention to just become rich and wealthy so that he can have status and fame among the people is wasting away the time that Allah has given him. His condition is such that then he is making money and wealth, he is happy and when he is not he becomes sad.
عَنْ كَعْبِ بْنِ عِيَاضٍ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ " إِنَّ لِكُلِّ أُمَّةٍ فِتْنَةً وَفِتْنَةُ أُمَّتِي الْمَالُ "
Ka'b bin 'Iyad radhiallah anhu narrated that the Prophet ﷺ said: "Indeed there is a fitnah for every Ummah, and the Fitnah for my Ummah is wealth."
This lust for wealth is the biggest fitnah for this Ummah. It has been stated in another Hadeeth:
عَنْ أَبِي الدَّرْدَاءِ، قَالَ خَرَجَ عَلَيْنَا رَسُولُ اللَّهِ ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ وَنَحْنُ نَذْكُرُ الْفَقْرَ وَنَتَخَوَّفُهُ فَقَالَ " آلْفَقْرَ تَخَافُونَ وَالَّذِي نَفْسِي بِيَدِهِ لَتُصَبَّنَّ عَلَيْكُمُ الدُّنْيَا صَبًّا حَتَّى لاَ يُزِيغَ قَلْبَ أَحَدٍ مِنْكُمْ إِزَاغَةً إِلاَّ هِيَهْ وَايْمُ اللَّهِ لَقَدْ تَرَكْتُكُمْ عَلَى مِثْلِ الْبَيْضَاءِ لَيْلُهَا وَنَهَارُهَا سَوَاءٌ " . قَالَ أَبُو الدَّرْدَاءِ صَدَقَ وَاللَّهِ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ تَرَكَنَا وَاللَّهِ عَلَى مِثْلِ الْبَيْضَاءِ لَيْلُهَا وَنَهَارُهَا سَوَاءٌ
Abu Darda' radhiallah anhu relates, "The Messenger of Allah ﷺ came out to us when we were speaking of poverty and how we feared it. He said: 'Is it poverty that you fear? By the One in Whose Hand is my soul, (the delights and luxuries of) this world will come to you in plenty, and nothing will cause the heart of anyone of you to deviate more than by that. By Allah, I am leaving you upon something like Bayda (white, bright, clear path) the night and day of which are the same.'"
Allah’s Nabi sallallahu alayhi wa sallam was not worried about poverty but more so about the wealth that will come into the hands of his Ummah. As it is the love for wealth that causes a person to become neglectful of his duties to Allah. In fact even those deeds that seem virtuous become tainted if they are done with the intention of attaining wealth from it.
Parents who do not practice the Deen is due to their desire for the Dunya and this desire for the Dunya is inherited by the children due to the company and environment provided to them by their parents. How can we give our children a virtuous upbringing if we are constantly filling their ears with the love and aspiration for wealth and schemes on how to acquire it?
How is it possible for parents to give tarbiyyah to their children if they are always busy doing something else when it is the time to pray Salaah? If they are never content with what Allah has given them and always want more, then this will not send the right message to their children. It is stated in another Hadeeth in Tirmidhi:
عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ عَمْرٍو، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ قَدْ أَفْلَحَ مَنْ أَسْلَمَ وَكَانَ رِزْقُهُ كَفَافًا وَقَنَّعَهُ اللَّهُ
Abdullah bin 'Umr narrated that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ said: "He has succeeded who accepts Islam, and is provided with what is sufficient (for his needs) and is content by Allah."
Remember to always prefer that Dunya which allows your Salaah to be fulfilled rather than that Dunya that compromises your fardh worship. If we are steadfast in establishing Salaah today, then tomorrow our children will do the same insha’allah.
This Hadeeth tells us that if we have enough of the Dunya that fulfils our basic needs then it is much better for us than that Dunya which makes us negligent and lazy in our fardh duties to Allah.
Alhamdulillah, it is permitted in Islam for you to own a business, but if due to this business you are not praying then this extra wealth becomes a fitnah (trial) for you.
Now returning to what I was saying earlier, that the main cause of people not practising what they preach is the love for the Dunya. And this is a very dangerous thing indeed, especially for those scholars who preach the Deen from the pulpit but in their private lives they continue to indulge in haram in direct opposition to what they preach to the people. It has been stated in a Hadeeth:
عَنْ أَنَسِ بْنِ مَالِكٍ قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ رَأَيْتُ لَيْلَةَ أُسْرِيَ بِي رِجَالًا تُقْرَضُ شِفَاهُهُمْ بِمَقَارِيضَ مِنْ نَارٍ فَقُلْتُ يَا جِبْرِيلُ مَنْ هَؤُلَاءِ قَالَ هَؤُلَاءِ خُطَبَاءُ مِنْ أُمَّتِكَ الَّذِينَ يَقُولُونَ مَا لَا يَفْعَلُونَ وَيَقْرَءُونَ كِتَابَ اللَّهِ وَلَا يَعْمَلُونَ
Anas ibn Malik radhiallah anhu reported that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ said, “I saw some men on the night of my ascension, whose lips were being sheared by scissors of fire. I said: O Jibreel, who are these people? Jibreel said: “Preachers from your nation who said what they did not do, and who recited the Book of Allah and did not act upon it.”
There will be preachers in the Hellfire who attained no benefit from their own knowledge. Let us not waste our lives on the lust for Dunya and neglect. And in the case of the scholars there will also be those who have been granted a voice yet they refuse to tell the people about the truth and what is good, and again the reason is the same. They are fearful of losing the Dunya that they have and fearful that if they say anything, they will get sacked and be jobless. And this is what happens: When the fear of Allah leaves a person’s heart, it is replaced by the fear of the Dunya and the people.
When this becomes our condition, what do we do? The solution to this fitnah is in this verse of the Qur’an:
وَٱسۡتَعِينُواْ بِٱلصَّبۡرِ وَٱلصَّلَوٰةِۚ
And seek help through patience and prayer.
When the time comes when the love of the Dunya is widespread, and the people to do not practice what they preach out of fear of losing the Dunya, then the best solution is to adopt patience and Salaah.
وَإِنَّهَا لَكَبِيرَةٌ إِلَّا عَلَى ٱلۡخَٰشِعِينَ
And Indeed, it is very difficult except for the Kashi’een
Now what is the meaning of patience? It is to be steadfast upon the Deen despite your situation. For example you may be going through a period of poverty, hardship or even sorrow. And then in this condition, when the temptation to do haraam may be high, you stay steadfast upon the Deen and do not indulge in haram and continue to obey Allah, and that is Sabr (patience). It is to persevere and endure what life throws at you without fear of poverty nor any lust for the wealth of the Dunya. It is to be steadfast in Salaah without being fearful of losing the Dunya.
One should select an occupation that makes it easier for him to pray Salaah with steadfastness than that which does not. And then one should accept the truth as truth and falsehood as falsehood.
وَٱسۡتَعِينُواْ بِٱلصَّبۡرِ وَٱلصَّلَوٰةِۚ
And seek help through patience and prayer.
The mufassireen have written that ‘wasta’een’ means to seek help from Allah by being patient through hardship and by being steadfast in praying Salaah. Allah helps such people who have these two qualities and they are never left helpless. Sabr teaches us to be content upon what Allah has given us and it rids the heart from the love of the Dunya and the love of wealth. When this happens a person will have a content heart and he will be able to control the desires of his Nafs because a person becomes content that he will obey Allah no matter what his condition. And Allah states in the Qur’an:
إِنَّمَا يُوَفَّى ٱلصَّٰبِرُونَ أَجۡرَهُم بِغَيۡرِ حِسَابٖ
Indeed those who endure patiently will be given their reward in full without measure.
(Surah Az-Zumar, verse 10)
When a person sticks to the path of Allah while the wealth and pleasures of this Dunya are passing him by, a much greater reward awaits him in the Akhirah. So Sabr is to remain obedient to Allah even if it results in some material loss in this world.
The second thing is Salaah, and if we were to adopt both of these things in our homes, it will change our environment into a beautiful one. It will be a home of contentment and recognition between halaal and haraam. And not only this but as the Qur’an says, Allah’s help comes to that person who does both of these things. Allah has placed utmost blessings in Salaah.
The first thing that the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam and his companions would turn to during hardship was Salaah. They saw the solution in Salaah.
So whether we are ill or in a state of sorrow or any other hardship, then remember that Salaah is the best remedy to all these problems. Once Hadhrat Abdullah ibn Abbas radhiallah anhu was informed that his son had passed away, upon hearing this his immediate reaction was to turn to Salaah, he prayed two rak’ah Nawaafil prayer and made dua to Allah subhana wa ta’ala. And he quoted upon being asked, that Allah has stated in the Qur’an to seek help from Him in patience and in prayer.
All worldly desires, greed, worries and concerns are eliminated with patience and Salaah. And then Allah subhana wa ta’ala says:
وَإِنَّهَا لَكَبِيرَةٌ إِلَّا عَلَى ٱلۡخَٰشِعِينَ ٱلَّذِينَ يَظُنُّونَ أَنَّهُم مُّلَٰقُواْ رَبِّهِمۡ وَأَنَّهُمۡ إِلَيۡهِ رَٰجِعُونَ
And Indeed, it is very difficult except for the Kashi’een. Those who bear in mind that they will meet their Lord and that unto Him is their return.
Salaah and Sabr will come easily to those who are Khaashi’een. This is a big message in the Qur’an. The Qur’an has this beautiful quality of giving us a message that is relevant to both the physical and spiritual condition of the human being.
Now let us look again at the issue of Da’wah and propagation of the Deen. Da’wah can only be effective when we ourselves practise what we preach. And that means for both our physical and spiritual conditions to be aligned. The desires for the Dunya that exist in the hearts (which is a spiritual disease) cause a person to do the opposite in his private life to that which he portrays in public. This disease is so dangerous that it does not look at a person’s status and can attack anyone from the common person on the street to the most learned of scholars. However Allah gave us a cure, two things, namely Sabr and Salaah, however Sabr and Salaah also have a condition for them to be considered as true Sabr and Salaah and that is when a person has Khushoo’. It is when a person has the fear of Allah in his heart, and it is only the clean and pure heart that can have true khushoo’ within it.
In this verse, Allah subhana wa ta’ala defines khushoo’, i.e. it is when a person is continuously mindful that he will certainly die one day and will meet the Lord and will have to answer for all his actions in this Dunya.
When this is the spiritual condition of a person, then Sabr and Salaah will be his solution to all hardship. And truly such a person will be content in the life that Allah has given him.
This verse also indicates the importance of Tazkiyyah (Purification of the inner-self). When a person has this purity, he will lose any lust for the material pleasures of this Dunya and his focus will become the attaining of success in the Akhirah.
Hence it is extremely important for a human being to work hard on purifying the heart, for it is with a pure heart that a person becomes humble and sincere.
So how do we acquire this Tasfiyah of the heart and the Tazkiyyah of the Nafs? It is by acquiring the company of a pious upright friend of Allah who knows this path well. To do Taubah in the presence of that Sheikh and then to make bay’ah and follow the instructions of that Sheikh which are all instructions to help a person attain a state of Khushoo’. And that is indeed the desire with which a person should go to a Sheikh. The desire to live a life free from disobedience to Allah and a desire to attain success in the Akhirah. Never go to a Sheikh with the desire that it will improve your standing in the Dunya.
Unfortunately many people go to a Sheikh with the wrong intentions, and my friends that is a fraudulent thing to do. There are many people who do dhikr yet they do not gain the benefit of that company because their actions lack the humility and sincerity that is required. And all this because they acquire the company of a Sheikh with the wrong intention. People sit in the company of a Sheikh for many years, yet in their hearts they have still not even managed to rectify the intention and the reason why they are there.
Let me give you an example of a person who had been a mureed of his Sheikh for decades and one day when he went to visit his Sheikh, he felt that he was not treated well at the Khanqah, and he complained about this to the Sheikh who was a kaamil Sheikh. The heart of the mureed was open to wasaawis (negative thoughts and criticisms). This mureed did not hear the words that he wanted to hear that would satisfy his Nafs.
Remember that a kaamil Sheikh does not look at the wealth or the status of a person in society, he is like a doctor who treats the sick. People from all walks of life have spiritual ailments and the Sheikh cures these ailments in ways that are specific to each of his mureeds.
So when a mureed always wants his Nafs to be satisfied then he has not come with the intention of rectification. The whole purpose of acquiring a Sheikh is for self-rectification, hence the student should give himself to the will of the Sheikh and follow his instruction. Remember if you allow the whispers of Shaytaan to make you have bad feeling toward your Sheikh then you cannot succeed in this path. It is essential for the mureed to accept the treatment and teachings of his Sheikh and to realise that this is all part of his spiritual development. Shaytaan can incite a person so much that he can even begin to feel anger towards his Sheikh.
Humility and sincerity are qualities that a Saalik must have in order to progress on this path of Tasawwuf. These things are an essential ingredient in the purification of the heart and the soul.
The first step of Tasawwuf is to have a sincere and honest relationship with the teacher. To accept that whatever instruction your Sheikh gives to you, whether it be in the form of a quiet gentle conversation or a telling off, is done for the sake of Allah and for your own benefit in improving you as a person. Many a student has left his Sheikh not to return when they feel they have not been treated with love and affection all the time despite needing some correction due to their ways. People may not realise the hikmah of the manner in which the Sheikh has spoken to them, but remember a kaamil Sheikh has only one purpose in mind when he speaks to you and that is to save you from the Hellfire and push you towards Jannah.
So Allah subhana wa ta’ala defines the Kashi’een in the Qur’an as:
ٱلَّذِينَ يَظُنُّونَ أَنَّهُم مُّلَٰقُواْ رَبِّهِمۡ وَأَنَّهُمۡ إِلَيۡهِ رَٰجِعُونَ
Those who bear in mind that they will meet their Lord and that unto Him is their return.
And truly these are those people who are humble and sincere and have worked hard on purifying themselves.
A person who goes to a Sheikh for the sole purpose of purifying himself and then works hard on his own character through effort and with the instruction of his Sheikh will truly one day reach that level when Sabr and Salaah will aid him immediately during any hardship that life may bring his way. He becomes of the Khashi’een, those special people who have the wealth of khushoo’, those people who practise what they preach and refrain from sins. And if we have an Aaalim like this then he will be a source of benefit for a whole generation of people. A scholar who purifies himself in the company of his Sheikh and then with no arrogance in his heart nor any lust for the Dunya he speaks the truth to the people will be that Aalim who will not succumb to the desires of this world and will possess the Sabr and Salaah mentioned in these verses.
My friends we often mention and praise the great personalities of Islam such as Hadhrat Imam Hussain radhiallah anhu, but what do we do in terms of adopting their ways? Why do we not adopt Sabr in the manner that they did? Surely this should be our aim to be like those people. The lives of the Prophets and the friends of Allah are lessons for us. For us to aspire to be like those people who devoted their lives for Allah.
We are in the month of Muharram, and the event of Karbala is being related in Masjids around the world, yet let us look at ourselves and see how much we follow in the footsteps of those pious people? The whole event concluded with Hadhrat Imam Hussain radhiallah anhu praying Salaah. He sacrificed everything that he had of this world for Allah and sought Allah’s pleasure in obedience, patience and Salaah.
When a person preaches after purifying himself and has true patience and Salaah in his life then that preaching has a great effect. History has shown that when true pious scholars did Da’wah they changed generations of people and brought them towards Allah. When a father is truly pious then his children will listen to him and follow what he says. When a father does not turn to haraam in times of poverty or hardship, then his children will pick up that steadfastness and piety. If we truly care about our children then we must lead by example. If we show them the beauty of piety then insha’allah they too will become pious servants of Allah.
Hence to set an example to our children, we must first ourselves be steadfast in Salaah and pray in congregation and be patient through hardship, i.e. not turn to any haraam means to address the hurdles of life. And this is the brilliant message of the Qur’an in these verses. And with this message is the message to develop khushoo’, which is developed through Tazkiyyah and Tasfiyah in the company of a kaamil Sheikh. When the heart is pure, then a person can truly attain the help of Allah in Sabr and Salaah. Such is the condition of the pure heart that a person will love to obey Allah and will become very apprehensive of going near anything that is haraam, whether it be during times of plenty or times scarcity. And an Aaalim with a pure heart will become a force of goodness and a muballigh of his time.
I pray that Allah subhana wa ta’ala gives us the taufeeq to have amal upon these verses of the Qur’an in the manner that pleases Allah. Let us not be insincere in our actions and do things to show the Dunya. The first step is to cross-examine ourselves both in terms of our physical actions and our spiritual condition. Are we regular in obeying the fardh commands of Allah? Are we doing good deeds purely for the sake of Allah or are we doing some things just so that people can look at us and praise us or praise our children?
And this message is not only for the common person but also for the Mashaa’ikh and Ulama of this Ummah. Remember that simplicity is a necessity for the Ulama of the Deen. Do not seek the pleasures of the Dunya but seek the pleasure of Allah. Allah has placed you in a position of responsibility and that responsibility must be taken seriously. Let not your lives be lived in the opposite manner to the words that you say to the masses from the pulpits.
Tell me why we should run after the wealth of the Dunya, when Allah gives us the wealth of the Akhirah? Be content with the condition in which Allah has kept you. If wealth comes your way in a halaal manner without you chasing for it then Alhamdulillah, and if poverty comes your way then be content with that also and do not turn to haraam, for that too is from Allah.
If we are parents, and we want our children to be good human beings, or want them to become Ulama, or Huffadh, then we must ourselves be good first. We must eradicate our own sins and become steadfast in obeying Allah. This is a very important message, not only will it benefit us in the Akhirah but it will also help us in the Dunya and the societies in which we live.
وَآخِرُ دَعْوَانا اَنِ الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ
22nd Jan, 2021