Truth, Disbelief and Renewal of Faith

18 05 2011

From time to time, the levels of our faith do tend to dwindle. This weakness of faith manifests itself in degraded quality of acts of our worship, negligence in remembering Allah, feeling indifferent to His commands and, in general, us having a doubtful heart. Experiencing any of these symptoms or others akin to them is an indication of a weakness of faith that in turn may be depriving us of peace, tranquility, and closeness to our creator and sustainer.

This weakness or weariness of faith (Eeman), whether due to a weak understanding of truth, or the strength of external negative forces, is to be expected. Consider what the Prophet (SAWS) said in this context:

“Faith wears out in your heart as clothes wear out, so ask Allah to renew the faith in your hearts.” (narrated by al-Haakim in his Mustadrak and al-Tabaraani in his Mu’jam with a saheeh isnaad).

 

Here are a few steps that we can take immediately to renew our faiths.

Seek Allah’s Help

As the prophet mentioned in the aforementioned hadith, we should first and foremost ask Allah to renew and reinforce the faith in our hearts. We should make this call part of our regular Duas. In doing so, we should also be mindful of why we believe in the message of truth in the first place. We believe because we can relate the message of truth revealed in the Quran to the realities of this universe and what we find within ourselves and our hearts. We believe because as humans, a deeper intellectual and spiritual introspection has caused our hearts to resonate with the message of truth. We believe because after having pondered over the messages of the Quran, we comprehend them and have internalized them in our psyche. But more importantly, we believe in the truth of the Quran and Islam because of Allah’s unchallengeable, unequivocal and logical assertion as the creator, sustainer, and sole power of this universe. Thus, being convinced of His deity and majesty and the nobility of His Messenger and Prophet, we have consciously chosen to believe and live that message of truth.

Reinforce truth with knowledge

Next, let’s get clear about the meaning of truth as Islam has defined it. The clearer the message of truth in our hearts, the stronger our faith will be. Part of the renewal is therefore to actively engage in understanding the message of truth in our hearts and minds through studying the Quran, studying the traditions of the Prophet (SAW) as documented in the books of hadith and poring over the knowledge of known scholars who have helped elaborate on that message. The process of renewing our faith thus requires an active and personal effort to reach out to learn the various truths defined in Islam. The more we strive for it, the more we will increase our levels of awareness and faith.

Remember, the longer you keep your heart locked up from learning more, the less you will be able to reason and comprehend the message of truth, and the more you will rely on blind faith alone to live the message of truth.

As Allah says in the Quran,

“Will they not then ponder over the Qur’an, or is it that they have their locks on (their) hearts (which bar them from reason).” [47:24]

Beware of symptoms of rejection

Finally, be wary of what in your heart could be blurring your view of the message of truth. Imaam ibn Katheer, in his famous Tafseer ibn Katheer, mentions the reasons that prevent people from believing the message of truth. If any of those reasons are seeping into your psyche and have started to blur your vision and impacting your faith as a result, you need to actively step in and cleanse yourself of those symptoms. The reasons that ibn Katheer had mentioned included:

  • Kufrul-’Inaad (Disbelief out of stubbornness)
  • Kufrul-Inkaar (Disbelief out of denial)
  • Kufrul-Kibr (Disbelief out of arrogance and pride)
  • Kufrul-Juhood (Disbelief out of rejection)
  • Kufrul-Nifaaq (Disbelief out of hypocrisy)
  • Kufrul-Istihaal (Disbelief out of trying to make HARAM (illegal) into HALAL (legal)
  • Kufrul-Kurh (Disbelief out of detesting any of Allah’s commands)
  • Kufrul-Istihzaha (Disbelief due to mockery and derision)
  • Kufrul-I’raadh (Disbelief due to avoidance)
  • Kufrul-Istibdaal (Disbelief because of trying to substitute Allah’s Laws)

In Summary

Living the message of truth, therefore, requires us to abandon stubbornness (an attitude when we know deep in our hearts that we are wrong), denial (blindly ignoring facts), arrogance (thinking that accepting truth will demean us), hypocrisy (pretending to be someone while concealing the truth), mockery and derision (we mock truth and the righteous to go along with others) and avoidance (for one reason or another we try to avoid the message of truth). Once we eliminate these negatives that may have stained our hearts and open our minds to the message of truth, we will be on our way to renew our faith. In that process, we will also sense Allah in our lives and we will feel the sweetness of faith.

Let’s remember the saying of the Prophet as reported by Anas (May Allah be pleased with him):

“Allah says: ‘ When a slave of Mine draws near to Me a span, I draw near to him a cubit; and if he draws near to Me a cubit, I draw near to him a fathom. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him running.” [Al-Bukhari].

Advertisements




Ten Things You Will Never Benefit From

25 05 2009

Ten Things You Will Never Benefit From
Imaam Ibn ul Qayyim

There are ten things you will never find benefit in:

The First: Knowledge which is void of action.

The Second: Actions which are void of sincerity to Allah, and void of exemplification of the Sunnah. (Note: These two conditions constitute the act being accepted by Allah i.e. Ikhlaas and Ittiba`a)

The Third: Wealth which is not spent in the way of Allah, so the one who exhausted all of his energy amassing it will not benefit from it in this life, nor will he see the fruits of it in the hereafter.

The Fourth: A heart which is void of the love of Allah and the ardent desire to meet him.

The Fifth: A body which is void of obedience to Allah.

 

The Sixth: A love for other than Allah which is void of any boundaries. (i.e. unconditional)

The Seventh: Time which is void of benefit and the individual does not take advantage of it to do actions which would bring him closer to Allah.

The Eighth: A thought which goes through the individuals mind and will bring him no benefit.

The Ninth: Doing a favor for someone who, that favor will not bring him closer to Allah nor will it benefit him in the affairs of his livelihood.

The Tenth: Fear and hope of someone whose forelock is in the hands of Allah, like a captive in the company of his master, who can bring no benefit or harm to himself or others, nor can he give life to the dead nor does he have any power over resurrection.

The worse and most detrimental of these ten is two:

1) The Heart

2) The Time

Firstly the heart, because it`s corruption stems from giving precedence to this transient life over the hereafter, and time because it makes the individual feel like he will live forever (which enables him to be even more negligent about his obligation to Allah)

The most amazing thing is when someone is presented with a situation and he turns all of his attention towards Allah to fulfill his needs, and never takes the time to ask Allah for the remedy he is need of to bring his heart back to life from the death of ignorance and negligence, and the cure he is in dire need of for his disease of Shahawaat (following his lowly desires) and Shubuhaat (doubts and misconceptions). Indeed if the heart dies, he will never be conscious of the sins which he commits and his disobedience to Allah.