Archive

Posts Tagged ‘sincerity’

The definition of sincerity— Sh. Salih al-Munajjid


 

Linguistically: It is extracted from the verb (Akhlas) whose source is (Ikhlaas), which means to make pure and not mixed with anything else.

 

This is why Chapter Al-Ikhlaas was given this name, because it emphasizes the Oneness of Allah and that He should be worshipped alone. Ibn Al-Atheer (rahimahullah) said:

“It was given this name because the one who recites it purifies his monotheism to Allah.”

The word Ikhlaas is the word of Tawheed (monotheism).

 

Al-Fayrooz Abaadi (rahimahullah) said:

“Akhlasa means to give up Riyaa’ (showing off) [i.e. offer worship purely for Allah].”

Al-Qaamoos Al-Muheet (797).

 

Al-Jurjaani (rahimahullah) said:

“Ikhlaas is to give up Riyaa’ when offering acts of worship.”

At-Ta’reefaat (28).

 

Technically: In Islamic terminology, the scholars defined it in different ways, and the following are the most important of these definitions:

Ibn Al-Qayyim (rahimahullah)  said:

“Ikhlaas is to purify one’s intention when worshiping Allah and devote the act purely for Him.”

Madaarij As-Saalikeen (91/2).

 

Al-Jurjaani (rahimahullah) said:

“Ikhlaas means to cleanse the heart from any defect or impurity that affects its purity.”

It was also said that Ikhlaas is to scrub away anything that affects its clarity.

At-Ta’reefaat (28).

 

Huthayfah Al-Mar’ashi (rahimahullah)  said:

“Ikhlaas is when the slave feels that performing a deed is the same for him whether he performs it in public or in seclusion.”

Al-Bayaan Fi Aadaab Hamalat Al-Qur’aan (13).

 

Others said:

“Ikhlaas is not to expect any reward from anyone for the deed you perform and to want anyone to see the deed except Allah.”

Madaarij As-Saalikeen (92/2).

odkK45J

In addition to this, there are many other definitions, which were stated by the righteous Salaf, may Allah have mercy upon them, such as:

1. To perform the deed for Allah and not to join anyone with Him in the intention
2. To perform the deed without people noticing.

Madaarij As-Saalikeen (91-92/2).

 

A sincere person is the one who does not care if people stop caring or respecting him in return for reforming and purifying his heart and making it sound in the scale of Allah. Also, he does not like that people know about anything he does, even if it is as small and minor as the weight of an ant.
It is very common in Islamic texts to use the word intention instead of the word sincerity. For jurists, intention in principle means to differentiate between acts of worship and habits when performing a deed, and it is to differentiate between acts of worship amongst themselves.

Jaami’ Al-‘Uloom Wal-Hikam (11/1)

 

Differentiating between acts of worship and habits when performing a deed, is like differentiating between taking a bath to clean one’s body or as a ritual bath to cleanse himself from impurity due to sexual intercourse or a wet dream. Differentiating between acts of worship amongst themselves, is like differentiating between praying four Rak’ahs for Dhuhr from those for ‘Asr.

 

However, if the word intention is used as a means to find out who is meant by performing a deed: is it performed purely and sincerely for the sake of Allah or not, then in this case intention is included and part of the definition of sincerity.

Truthfulness and sincerity when performing an act of worship have close meanings, but the difference is that sincerity takes place after one starts performing the deed, while truthfulness is usually before the deed starts. Therefore, sincerity branches out of truthfulness.

At-Ta’reefaat (28).

 

[From the book: Sincerity, page 4-7, by Sh. Salih al-Munajjid]

 

 

Signs of sincerity – Shaikh Salih al-Munajjid


 

The scholars mentioned some signs, which reflect that the person has sincerity, such as:

 

Not longing to become known:

Ibraaheem ibn Al-Ad-ham, [may Allaah have mercy upon him], said:

A slave who seeks to become famous and known is not a sincere slave of Allaah.” 

[Hilyat Al-Awliyaa’ (31/2)]

 

 

Not longing to be praised:

Some scholars said:

“A scholar should address the people while having a sincere intention. As soon as he starts liking what he is saying, then he should stop and remain silent, and if being silent becomes appealing to him, then he should start to talk. He should never stop holding himself to account because people naturally like to be recognized and praised.”

 

 

In addition to the above point, the following are more signs reflecting sincerity:

 Being energetic in working for the sake of Islaam.
 Rushing to work for the sake of Islaam for the sake of Allaah and not only when there is an expected return.
 Persevering and not complaining.

 Being keen on hiding one’s deeds.

 Perfecting the work even if it is done in secret.

 Being keen on performing deeds in secret.

 Making the work done in secret more than that done in public.

 

These are signs reflecting sincerity on the part of the slave, but  one should be careful not to feel sincere, because the moment one starts to feel that he is sincere, then he needs to purify his intention as this feeling (of being sincere) reflects that he lost sincerity. We ask Allaah to make us among His sincere slaves and to purify our hearts and deeds from showing off and hypocrisy.

 

[Sincerity, pg. 50-51]

 

Related Links:

⇔  A Sermon by Abu Bakr As-Siddiq [RadiAllahu anhu] on Sincerity and drawing Lessons

⇔  From the chapter of ‘Sincerity’: Tanbih Al-Ghafileen

⇔  “Ad-Deen is sincerity” (الدِّينُ النَّصِيحَةُ)

⇔  Hiding deeds

⇔  Hiding ones tears

⇔  “And was this showing off, O Sufyan?”

From the chapter on ‘Hoping for Allah’s Mercy’: Tanbih Al-Ghafileen


 

It was said:

“When the following verse was revealed: {“...My Mercy embraces all things…”} [al-A’raf; 156],

Satan – may Allah curse him – became hopeful and said: “I am a thing of those things, so I will have a portion of Allah’s Mercy!”

And the Jews and Christians became hopeful and said: “We area thing of those things, so we will have a portion of it.”

So, when the saying of Allah {“…I shall reserve it for those who are pious, give charity, and believe in Our signs…”} was revealed, then Satan lost hope of receiving any of His Mercy.

But, the Jews and Christians said: “We are pious, we give charity, and we believe in the signs of our Lord, so we are still eligible for Allah’s Mercy!”

Then, the saying of Allah {“Those who follow the unlettered Prophet and Messenger…”} [al-A’raf; 157] was revealed – meaning, those who believe in Muhammad (peace be upon him).

So, the Jews and Christians then lost all hope, and the Mercy remained exclusively for the believers.”

 

It was said:

“O Lord! You have given us one mercy, and have honored us with it, and it is Islam.So, if you give us one hundred portions of Your Mercy, then how can we not be hopeful for Your forgiveness?”

 

It was said:

“As long as the person is in good health, then fear of Allah is preferred. Once he becomes sick and is unable to perform many more good deeds, then hope in His Mercy is preferred.”

 

It was said:

“O Lord! You have Created Paradise and made it a meeting place for your allies, and the disbelievers have lost all hope of entering it, and the Angels were created without being in need of it,and You are also not in need of it. So, if you will not give me Paradise, then who will You give it to?”

 

More read:

≡ Tanbih Al-Ghafileen

 

From the chapter of ‘Sincerity’: Tanbih Al-Ghafileen


 

It was said:

“The likeness of the one who performs good deeds in order to show off and have a good reputation is like the one who goes out to the marketplace and fills his bags with stones, and as a result, the people say:”Look at how stuffed this man’s bags are!” So, he gains nothing except what the people say about him, and if he wishes to trade these stones for something, he will get nothing in return for them.

Similarly, the one who performs good deeds for show-off and reputation; there is no benefit for him in his actions other than what the people say about him, and no reward awaits him in the Hereafter, as Allah – the Exalted – says: {“And We shall turn to whatever deeds they did, and Weshall make them as scattered floating particles of dust.”} [al-Furqan;23]

It was once asked:
“Who is the sincere one? It was answered: “The sincere one is the one who hideshis good deeds the same way he hides his bad deeds.”
It was said:
“Preserving an act of obedience is more difficult than performing it, because it is like a glass lamp that is easily broken and cannot withstand rough treatment. Likewise, the good action, if itis exposed to show-off, it breaks. And if it is exposed to its performer being pleased with himself,then it breaks. If a person wants to perform an action and fears that he will show-off with it, then if he is able to throw out this riya’ from his heart, then he should exert all efforts in doing so. If he is unable to do so, then he should not abandon performing this act because of the possibility of showing off;rather, he should perform it, then seek Allah’s forgiveness for what he might have had of riya’. It might be that Allah will guide him to having sincerity in other actions of his.”
It was narrated that a man asked: “The people say that I am a righteous person, so how can I tell whether or not I am righteous?” So, it was said to him:
First, expose your secrets in front of the righteous. If they are pleased with you, then know that you are righteous. If they are not, then you are not righteous.
Second, offer the dunya to your heart. If it rejects it, then know that you are righteous.If it accepts it, then you are not.
Third: offer the possibility of death to your soul. If it longs for death,then know that you are righteous. If not, then you are not.
If these three characteristics are combined in you, then ask Allah to prevent any show-off from entering upon your actions so that they would not become ruined.
[From: Tanbih Al-Ghafileen, pg-01]

More:

The Prevalence of Jealousy Amongst Students of Knowledge By Shaykh Abdul Aziz As Sadhan


 

This issue, in reality, is one of the most serious drawbacks of knowledge, rather, if you will, you can say that it depletes the many blessings (i.e. barakah) that are found in knowledge. Many of the Salaf (i.e. pious predecessors) have spoken very thoroughly and extensively about this issue. If jealousy (i.e. hasad) takes  hold of the student of knowledge it will destroy his hereafter, and the more he finds himself consumed by it, the greater and more severe the harm will be.

 
Jealousy is an obstacle that infringes on the student’s ability to seek knowledge, his ability to be present during the dissemination of knowledge and likewise, infringes on his ability to comprehend what he hears of knowledge. Many communities have not escaped this issue although the people vary as it relates to it. Some are largely engrossed in it and others are barely affected by it.

 
Therefore, it is imperative that much is said about the topic of jealousy due to its danger and the prevalence of it amid the students of knowledge, especially amongst those who are contemporary peers to one another, because it corrupts their endeavor of seeking knowledge. Allah commented on the mischief of the jealous individual in His book as well as the Prophet (Sallahu alaihi wa salam) who also warned against his ill nature. We all read the statement of Allah:

“…and from the evil of the jealous person when he gets jealous” {113:6}
And we read:

“Or are they jealous of the people because of what Allah has bestowed upon them from His bounty…” {4:54}
And we read the statement of the Prophet (Sallahu alaihi wa salam):

“And don’t become jealous of one another…”

(Collected Saheeh Al Bukhari)

 
And the statement of the Prophet:

“There is no jealousy except in two situations: A man whom Allah has given him the Book (i.e. Qur’an) and he recites it day and night. And a man whom Allah has given wealth and he spends it in charity day and night.”

(Collected Saheeh Al Bukhari)

 

 
Jealousy has reasons and at the same time, it is a disease that can be cured. If you have some degree of jealousy in you, then you should be extremely cautious and never negligent of it, because jealousy is like vegetation, in that, the more it is nourished the more it will continue to grow and develop, so as long as the individual continues to be careless about it and neglects to rid himself of it. The hatred that is produced as a result of jealousy is more foundational with the desire than the hatred caused by anything else, as the poet said:
“For every type of hatred there is hope for its eventual love, except the hatred of the individual who envies you due to jealousy!”

 
Sheikh ul Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

“There is no human body that is free from jealousy; however the noble one conceals it while the ignoble one reveals it.”

The human being is weak by nature and is subjected to many character-flaws because of it and from these flaws is that of jealousy, especially between contemporary peers and especially between the students of knowledge.

Imam Ath Thahabi (may Allah have mercy on him) commented:

“There was no community that was free from division and jealousy except the prophets and messengers.”

 
If the jealous individual would consider his condition for a moment, he would notice that, by his jealousy, he is actually displaying his discontentment with the divine decree (i.e. Qadr) of Allah in that, when Allah bestows a blessing on one of His servants, the jealous person either physically or verbally expresses his displeasure with the bounty Allah conferred upon him.

 
This character-flaw increases the heart in coarseness and distances the slave from any hope of good. And if we were to open the door wide for sincere mutual advice to one another and request from our peers and our brothers sincere advice we would be able to avoid this evil pitfall. And it was because of this that Al Ahnaf Ibn Qays said:

“Reprimand is better than resentment!”

 
So if every one of us saw a particular fault or character defect in his brother, especially amongst the students of knowledge, and hastened to advise him and make du’a (i.e. supplication) for him, and reject any destructive criticism of him or any offensive insult or attack on his character, then many of our affairs would easily be rectified. Nonetheless, the desire of the individual pushes him to seek superiority over others by exposing their faults and thus the individual is not able to rid himself of this ignoble quality restrain it with the reins of taqwah (i.e. God-consciousness and fear of Allah) and piety.

 

[ “Millstones in the Path of Seeking Knowledge”,  Translated by Shadeed Muhammad on Sunday July 24, 2011 corresponding to the 23rd of Sha’ban 1432H in the City of Philadelphia.]

 

Related link:  Signs of Jealousy Prevalent Amongst the Students of Knowledge [Must read] – By Shaykh Abdul Aziz As Sadhan

 

Signs of Jealousy Prevalent Amongst the Students of Knowledge [Must read] – By Shaykh Abdul Aziz As Sadhan


 

These signs are minimized or increased depending on the strength of the jealousy in the individual. I am going to mention some of these signs so that perhaps the one who is tested with them can hasten to rid himself of them. I will restrict these signs only to those prevalent amid the students of knowledge.

 
The First: To rejoice at the mistake of his fellow student. 

The error of his fellow student is greater than the error of any other because his peer is the one who competes with him in being at the forefront and competes with him within the same community and thus he infringes upon his opportunity to be the elite show-off. So every time his peer errs or makes a mistake, his joy and happiness increases and he considers it a glad tiding of his own rise because he believes that the mistake of his fellow student translates into the rise or upliftment of his own pre-eminence. There are very few people who escape this particular sign. It is an internal matter of the heart that none knows of except Allah and then the individual himself. If there is anyone from amongst us who is in possession of this quality, then it is upon him to hasten with its removal and to repent to Allah from it.

 
The Second: To rejoice at the absence of his fellow student from the circles of knowledge.

To be happy at the absence of his peer from the circle of knowledge or to be happy at his lack of attendance in an affair that he could possibly debate or argue with you in. You will notice two peers from the students of knowledge, when they are together, one of them most likely contends with the other due to the possession of knowledge they both have. So when one of them is absent, the other is left to attend the circle of knowledge by himself exclusively and is able to stand out amid the rest of their peers. So he is overjoyed at the absence of his fellow student and he thinks that because of it, there is a possible rise in his level over him due to the fact that he has access to more knowledge than him.

 
The Third: It pleases him to hear someone insult his fellow student and call him offensive names.

It pleases him to hear someone insult his fellow student and call him offensive names and he actually finds himself content with this. Rather he doesn’t even try to stop the individual from back-biting his fellow student or insulting him and may even partake in or assist the individual in doing so! There is no doubt that this is haram (i.e. forbidden), as backbiting the average layman is impermissible, not to mention a student of knowledge whose benefit far surpasses just himself.

 
The Fourth: He has nothing positive to say about his fellow student when he is asked about him.

A new student of knowledge may come to the jealous student or a general questioner and ask about aparticular individual regarding something generally related to him and the jealous student will seize theopportunity to speak ill about him or to belittle his status as a student or to address him by an offensivename and there is no doubt that this sign is connected to the previous one.

 
The Fifth: To find difficulty within himself if a question is directed towards other than him or the response to a question is requested from his fellow student while he is present.

 

Two or three students may be present in a gathering and it may be requested from one of them to speak or a question might be directed towards him specifically and you will find that the jealous one is overcome by extreme difficulty and embarrassment while he tries diligently to act as if it doesn’t bother him. This is because the direction of a question to this fellow student in particular is from the most extreme calamities he can be afflicted with. If this individual would consider for a moment: This is the bounty of Allah which He bestows on whomsoever He wills, and the fact that the question was directed towards him, does not necessarily mean that he is more virtuous than you absolutely, then it would be easy for him to handle this.

 
The Sixth: To belittle the benefit or the knowledge his fellow student brings to the table.

The jealous student could possibly research an issue or the response to a certain problematic subject and turn many pages and search through many volumes and still not find the answer to his problem. On the other hand, his peer could do the same and come out successful. And when it is brought to his attention
that his fellow student did such, he belittles the effort he exerted.

But if it was brought to his attention that someone else did this, he would supplicate for him and praise him and even exaggerate the mere mention of his name!
However, if the benefit came to him by way of this particular student, he intentionally conceals his admiration for him and does his best to conceal the benefit which his fellow student was responsible for finding. This is because he considers the materialization of his fellow student’s reputation to be an infringement upon his own right to be recognized or a diminution of his own personality!

 

The Seventh: To try and find fault with the speech of his fellow student when he speaks or to criticize him when he responds to a question.

You will notice that when some of the people are in a gathering and a issue is brought up and someone responds to it, the one who has a disease or jealousy in his heart will try and find a pretentious problem in his response, rather he will try and create a mistake in his response or he will try and alter his speech from its apparent meaning or misinterpret his speech until he makes it erroneous and there is no doubt that this is the result of a disease in his heart

 

 

[ This was taken from the Shaykh’s monumental book “Millstones in the Path of Seeking Knowledge”  Translated by Shadeed Muhammad on Sunday July 24, 2011 corresponding to the 23rd of Sha’ban 1432H. in the City of Philadelphia.]

Related Links:

¶ Advice to the Students of Knowledge by Shaykh Salih bin Sa’d as-Suhaymi

¶ The Phenomenon of Common People and Junior Students of Knowledge Issuing ‘Bayāns’ by Shaykh Ibrāheem bin ’Āmir ar-Ruhaylī

¶  Advice to the Youth of Ahl-us-Sunnah by Shaykh Sultan Eeid

¶  Correcting the Statements of a Scholar of the Sunnah and Not Seeking to Totally Drop Him by Shaykh Saalih bin ’Abdul’Azeez Aali Shaykh

Leave this fitnah of Photography O Salafis

April 16, 2013 6 comments

♣Bismillah Ar Rahmaan Ar Raheem♣

All praise belongs to Allah alone, the Lord of all that exists. We praise Him, we seek His aid, we ask His forgiveness. We seek refuge in Allah from the evil of ourselves and from the evil of our deeds. To whomsoever Allah guides, none can misguide him and to whomsoever Allah misguides, none can guide him. I bear witness that Allah alone is worthy of worship without any partner and I bear witness that Muhammed (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) is the slave and Messenger of Allah.

 

To proceed,

This article mainly aims the follower of truth i.e. Salafis, about an important issue which they are well aware of but have taken very lightly from past few years. The Issue is “Use of photography in Da’wah.”

Remember we are not talking about “videos” but about “photography”.

 

Allah says in the Qur’an- And remind, for Indeed reminder help the Believers.[51:55]

And Prophet [sallallahu alaihi wasallam] said:  “Ad-Deen is sincerity” (الدِّينُ النَّصِيحَةُ)“[Naseehah] (Recorded by Muslim)

So, I request my brothers and sisters to take this article as a advice and reminder. May Allah reward you all.

 

 

Know that we Salafis are distinguished from others only because we follow truth and not desires even if we have to go against ourselves and our loved ones. We follow what is clear and leave all whatever is doubtful.

 

 

In the age of modern technology, many things have been invented which helped the Da’wah in many ways like through Satellite Islamic channels, Internet, videos etc. When people started video recording of lectures delivered by Scholars, many questions were asked to prominent scholars about the permissibility of it. Some said if the benefit is more then there is no harm in this while others forbade it. However, regarding photography, Scholars prohibited it unanimously except in Dire needs like a photograph for passport, ID card, Criminal records.

 

What we are witnessing from last few years is that our Salafi brothers take unnecessary photos of themselves, Scholars, audiences, speakers etc. during conferences without any need and without any benefit. We see so many photos that they form Albums. We see photos like:

  • Scholars sitting on Dais (stage)
  • Scholar delivering the lecture
  • The photo of scholar in the poster for lectures he will be delivering
  • Scholars having chat among themselves in the guestroom
  • Scholars having their meal and dinner
  • Brothers shaking hands with scholars
  • Audience listening to lecture
  • Volunteers

And so many to mention here.

Hope you understood the point which I wanted to make.

 

And I don’t blame scholars for this because many a times they are not even aware of such things.

Like our Sheikh Ibn Baaz (rahimahullah) said:

“It is not permissible to picture people whether with their consent or without their consent; and if it is with their consent then the sin is greater. And pictures with souls in them are prohibited, because the Messenger of Allah (Sal Allahu aliyhi wa sallam) cursed the picture makers”

Refer: “Fataawa Noor ala Darb” (Aqeedah) No.318

 

 

And I remember the Saying of Muhaddith of this era, Imam Naasiruddin al Albani (rahimahullah). He (rahimahullah) said:

“I fear that Salafiyoon one day will say- Photography isn’t picture making. You just press a button.”

[Silsilat ul Huda wan Nur 393]

SubhanAllah, Allah had given Imam al Albani great insight in matters of deen.

 

Are we not witnessing the same thing? Unfortunately yes. Today we see some of our brothers even try to defend the permissibility of photography even without any dire need.

 

The matter of photography has become so common among our salafi brothers that they no longer feel it to be from major Sin.  And therefore we see our brothers proudly posting these photos of living beings  on social networking sites and elsewhere and feel very comfortable with it.. And the reason is very simple- they have taken this matter very lightly and they try to defend “by giving the excuse of Da’wah” even though there is no benefit of these things in Da’wah.

 

I ask such brothers,

What benefit you and people get by clicking and posting such pictures?

How the Photo of Scholar helps the Da’wah? Isn’t his speech which is important?

Are you not the one who debates with Sufis and others for introducing new thing in Islam?

Are you not the one who gives up his desires just to be saved from major sins and to remain in saved sect?

Are you not the one who is always ready to accept the verdicts of Scholars without trying to find and search fatwas which suits your desires?

Are you not the one who takes every matter of Islam sincerely and seriously?

Yes, I know you are the one. But then why such leniency and carelessness in this matter which comes under major sins?

 

My dear brothers and sisters, please avoid this emerging fitnah of taking photographs when deep within your heart you know that it’s haram except in dire needs. Be a follower of Salaf as Saalih by actions and not merely by words.

May Allah guide us all.

-Dr Iftakhar Ahmed

 

%d bloggers like this: