Madinat al-Muslimeen Islamic Message Board
|notes on ikhlaas|
|06/08/01 at 00:09:17|
Are my intentions alright?
Am I doing it for Allah?
When I’m looking deep deep down inside
Do I have the right niyyah?
[i]-- [url=http://www.mynaraps.com]myna raps[/url][/i]
al-ikhlaas – an act of the heart
- we need to understand that good/moral and bad/immoral actions are what Allah has defined as such – ‘ilm is important because we discover this by studying and learning this deen
Why is ikhlaas fundamental?
Because Allah has made it fundamental: Allah does not accept any action without two conditions: I’tibaa and Ikhlaas
(I’tibaa – the action committed must be in conformity with shari’ law. in major issues as well as minor, in ibadaat as well as mu’amalaat. )
What is ikhlaas? (usually translated as ‘sincerity’)
- from the word khaliss – pure, uncontaminated, unpolluted (“khaliss water”, “khaliss gold” – not mixed with any other substance or contaminant)
[“they have been commanded to show ubudiyyah to Allah with khaliss”]
- when inside our hearts and minds, our inner selves there is no other motivation to do something good except Allah. Anything with Allah in this desire removes ikhlaas.
- with ikhlaas comes shawq – longing. Longing for Allah, for jannah, fear of Allah’s displeasure and jahannam.
- if there is any other presence in the qalb, any contaminent in our motive/intention other than Allah or present with Allah – that is not ikhlaas
opposite of ikhlaas: ishraak
but from the Qur’an we know that whosoever practices shirk, Allah will never forgive it, and that whosoever practices shirk, Allah will never enter him/her into jannah..
How do we reconcile this with the fact that all of us have committed ishraak? -> there are 2 types of shirk:
- shirk akbar [major shirk]
- shirk asghar [minor shirk]
Major shirk - shirk in tawheed of Allah [rububiyyah, asmaa’ was sifaat, uluhiyyah/ubudiyyah] – whether implicit or explicit. even slaughtering the wing of a fly in the name of shaytan is akbar – unforgiveable except with accepted tawbaah
- we need to stop having these grandiose discussions when we don’t have understanding of the basics of Islam – some of us are guilty of committing major shirk (something that literally takes us outside the fold of Islam) but we’re so concerned with other things
– we forget that the only ones who will be successful on the day of judgement are those who have a qalbus saleem which comes with tazkiya -> tawbaah is the gateway to tazkiya
“we need tawbaah from our tawbaah sometimes”
Minor shirk - divided into two:
- jaliy [obvious]
- khafeey [tacit, hidden]
this is something abominable, strips all actions from any reward or benefit.. leaves you bankrupt
shirk asghar also called ar-riyaa’ [from the verb 'to see', because it’s done for other people to see]
ex.) learning shariah and teaching it, when major motivating factor is building a reputation, gaining authority and respect among people – this is riyaa un jaliy – an epidemic among institutions of learning. Imagine Imam Ghazali admitting that all of his work was not for Allah alone (where does that put me?)
In this situation (riyaa un-jaliy) all of the amal [action] is invalidated – muhbattah – all reward is GONE (think about this!)
so why do we commit riyaa’ if we know the consequences are so severe?
Hubbud dunyaa [love and attachment to dunyaa], specifically two types:
1. al-maal – possessions, seeking material ownership of things
2. al-jaah – love to own hearts – wanting people to love, admire, respect you
this is normal to an extent, natural to want these things – but must be legitimate – we should not seek these things out..
in fact, for good people the presence of a reputation or the absence of one was the *same* for them – it made no difference in their hearts – that’s one aspect of a nafsul mutma’innah
whether the world blames and criticizes them or praises them – it is the same for them because they acknowledge that all is from Allah
there are levels of riyaa:
khafeey is when the original motivator is Allah, but later on other people’s appreciation makes the work easier for me – when no one notices me, I did it though it was difficult – but more energy is gained due to people seeing me
An even more hidden riyaa:
the action is for Allah, and when people see me, my amount of energy does not change - but I feel joy when people see me. I don’t *want* people to see me, but when they do see me perform khayr it makes me feel good, my heart is in a different state
An even more hidden riyaa:
the action is for Allah, and there is no energy or change in my heart with people, and I hide my good deeds the way I hide my bad – but I feel like I should be shown respect – feel like I am entitled to it – expect it.. and feels that inkling of displeasure when it is not given
Look at how subtle and deep riyaa can be in the heart! Indeed it is deceptive…
[This type of shirk will continue to be in my ummah like the sound of an ant on a barren rock in the darkness of the night..] - hadeeth of Rasulullah [saw]
so beware of this!!
So how do I stop riyaa?
--- Think *deeply* about the consequences:
- losing the love of Allah
- being punished
- a life with no peace - never being able to please people because people change – constantly trying to please others, to get them to have a good image of you, causes hostility for jaa’a [recognition], pain with competition - every moment of enjoyment now has murkiness, anxiety – you're always on your toes, you’re always planning, designing, trying to keep people seeing you in good light – what kind of life is this? no rest, no comfort, no peace...
- “Anyone who drinks from the cup of riyaa will regret it” – you’re living your life for dunyaa – something deceptive, fleeting, and not worth that much effort and pain (and sacrifice of eternal pleasure in jannah)
If this riyaa' is in an something that is a fard kifayaa or sunnah, stop the action – because fard ayn takes precedent and it’s fard ayn to have ikhlaas...
But what if you commit riyaa with fard 'ayn?
Constant struggle against the nafs, fight off contaminants but don't stop
What is the origin of riyaa?
- the nafs likes to be praised.. hubbul hamd [love of praise]
- desire for what other people have [admiration, respect etc]
- fear of criticism and rejection
knowing the way the nafs operates helps us control and struggle agains it.
al madd – to celebrate one’s positive characterestics – praise and criticism should be on the same level, should have the same effect on us – because in our hearts we are at peace and know that Allah knows our true state.
Think about *who* you’re trying to impress – a person who sees only part of you, who knows so little of you? Or Allah, the All Knowing, the All Seeing, the One closer to you than your own jugular vein??
When you’re praised…
- think.. are you *worthy* of being praised? You know the sins you hide though others do not – seek forgiveness for what the person doesn’t know about you but that Allah knows about you
imam shafi'ii : "i love people of righteousness and i am not of them" <= if this is imam shafi'ii, who are *we* to accept praise?
- thank Allah for exposing your good and concealing your bad – and you should try to conceal both
When you’re criticized…
- ask Allah to grant rahma on the one who gives you the present of your own defeciencies – it keeps you humble and aware of your true state of self and how you truly look to Allah
- even if someone criticizes you for something that is incorrect, think about the bad things you've done that he or she doesn’t know about… you will not be so quick to defend yourself then
Set a contract with you and your nafs every morning
Evaluate your deeds every evening
We need to watch our heart constantly – have a state of struggle against the nafs until I watch every beat of my heart for changes in feelings, motives…
this is a gradual endeavor, a lifetime endeavor - one we need to work on every time our heart beats...
and remember that Allah is pure and only accepts that which is pure.. so make sure your intentions are khaliss.
Allahumma a'innee aoodhu beeka an 'amirun naasa bil birri wa ansu nafsee.
if there are mistakes in this, please let me know..
|Re: notes on ikhlaas|
|06/08/01 at 00:10:14|
|JazakAllahu Khayran se7en for typing and posting that. Ikhlas is so fundamental and is a struggle to attain. Thanks for the reminder.|
|Re: notes on ikhlaas|
|06/08/01 at 10:22:48|
Jazakillah khair Se7en, those were very helpful notes.
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