Bismillaah Al-Hamdulillaah wa salatu wa salaamu ‘ala rasulullaah
Scholarly Gems of Tremendous Benefit as Related to al-Ikhlaas
Imam Ahmad recorded that Mahmud bin Labid said that the Messenger of Allaah (salallaahu ‘alaihiwasallam) said: What I fear the most for you is the small Shirk. “They said: What is the small Shirk, O Messenger of Allaah.” He said: Showing off (Ar-Riya’). Allaah will say on the Day of Resurrection, when the people are rewarded or punished for their deeds, “Go to the one for whom you were showing off in the world and see if you will find any reward with him.”
Al-Ikhlaas: Is to single out Allaah – free from all imperfection – in one’s intention (qasd) in one’s obedience (to Him).
Shaikh Muhammad ibn ‘Abdul-Wahaab al-‘Aqeel (hafidhahullaah) relayed as a paragon of the Sunnah the following gem:
Imam ash-Shafi’ee (rahimahullaah) used to ask Allaah: I wish if the people took my knowledge and they didn’t know my name. I wish they didn’t even know me, but they took the knowledge that I had.
Shaikh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-‘Uthaimeen (rahimahullaah) said in his sharh of Thalaathal Usool:
…As for ihsaan in the worship of Allaah, then it is that you worship Allaah as if you were seeing him, as the Prophet (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said.
So worship done in this way, that a person worships his Lord as if he were actually seeing Him is worship that is accompanied by yearning and seeking. So a person will find that his soul encourages him upon worship done in this way, since he is yearning for the One he loves. Therefore, he worships Him as if he were seeing Him, and he directs his heart to Him and turns to him and seeks to draw near to Him, He the One free of all imperfections and the Most High.
“Then even though you do not see Him, then He certainly sees you.” This part shows worship done while fleeing and fearing, and is therefore the second level of Ihsaan. So if you do not worship Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, as if you are seeing Him and seeking Him and your soul is encouraging you toward Him, then worship Him, keeping in mind that He sees you. So you will then worship Him as one who fears Him and seeks to flee from His retribution and punishment.
This level is held – by those having knowledge of these affairs – to be lower than the first level. Worship of Allaah, the Perfect and Most High, is, as Ibn al-Qayyim (rahimahullaah) said:
Worship of Ar-Rahman is utmost love of Him, along with the worshippers’ submission and humility; they are its two pillars.
So worship is built upon these two matters: utmost love, and utmost humility and submission. Love causes one to desire and seek, and humility causes one to fear and flee. This is Ihsaan in the worship of Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic. He will not desire with his worship that he is seen by the people, or heard of, nor will he desire their praise. It will be the same to him whether the people notice him or do not notice him.
He will worship with Ihsaan in every condition. Indeed part of the completion of purity and sincerity of worship (al-ikhlaas) is that a person should seek not to be seen by the people when he worships, and that his worship should be a secret between him and his Lord…
Abu Uwais relayed from the work of Shaikh ‘Abdul-‘Aziz ibn Muhammad Sid-Han (rahimahumullaah) the following tremendous benefit as the first matter to adhere to for those who desire rectification of the Ummah – al-Ikhlaas.
And this matter [al-ikhlaas] is the foundation for the success of our actions and the success of the one doing the actions. It is the principle from which we [act]. If we correct our niyya and if we have sincerity, then our actions will be righteous. And with corruption in our intention and corruption in our actions, then in that case our intention would be corrupt and our action would be corrupt.
Based upon the importance of ikhlas, it has come several times – verified and confirmed and assisted upon – in the Book of Allaah tabarak wa ta’aala, such as:
And they were commanded not, but that they should worship Allaah, and worship none but Him Alone (abstaining from ascribing partners to Him), and perform As-Salat (Iqamat-as-Salat) and give Zakat: and that is the right religion. (Al-Baiyinah, ayah 5)
Say (O Muhammad): “Verily, I am commanded to worship Allaah (Alone) by obeying Him and doing religious deeds sincerely for Allaah’s sake only and not to show off, and not to set up rivals with Him in worship. (Az-Zumar, ayah 11)
Say (O Muhammad): “O My slaves who believe (in Tawheed), be afraid of your Lord (Allaah) and keep your duty to Him. Good is (the reward) for those who do good in this world, and Allaah’s earth is spacious (so if you cannot worship Allaah at a place, then go to another)! Only those who are patient shall receive their rewards in full, without reckoning.” (Az-Zumar, ayah 10)
So, call you (O Muhammad, and the believers) upon (or invoke) Allaah making (your) worship pure for Him (Alone) (by worshipping none but Him and by doing religious deeds sincerely for Allaah’s sake only and not to show off and not to set up rivals with Him in worship). However much the disbelievers (in Tawheed) may hate (it). (Ghafir, ayah 14)
With ikhlaas, Allaah blesses the actions of those who work. Allaah will increase the person’s tawfeeq, and will support that person. And the sincere worker is upon khair (good), and from good, and to good. And because of this, the sincere advisers – even if he doesn’t have much legislated knowledge – Allaah will bless their striving, and bless their da’wah. And this is the effect of their ikhlaas.
Even their advice has a place in the nafs (soul) of the one called; it has an effect on them. And no doubt, this is from the benefit and the fruit of ikhlaas. And upon the caller to Allaah is that he asks Allaah to grant him al-ikhlaas in all affairs, and any time that your desires comes up against your intent, [you must] battle with that, that you come out of that [battle] with ikhlaas, and to strive against your lower desires and your self, and you be steadfast in that. And you will see from Allaah tabarak wa ta’aala that which will bring enjoyment to your eyes and open up your chest.
As for those who strive hard in Us (Our Cause), We will surely guide them to Our Paths (Allaah’s Religion – Islamic Monotheism). And verily, Allaah is with the Muhsinoon (good doers). (Al-‘Ankabut, ayah 69)
Imam Ibnul-Qayyim (rahimahullaah) said:
He who gets himself in the habit of doing actions just for the sake of Allaah, there is nothing harder upon him than to do an action for other than Allaah. And he who gets himself in the habit of doing actions based upon his desires, or [an ulterior motive, such as praise from the people, or status, or position, or wealth] then there is nothing harder upon him than to try to do an action sincerely to Allaah.
Shaykh ‘Abdul-Malik ar-Ramadaanee (hafidhahullaah) – in his excellent book Sittu Durar – said:
It has been stated in definition of Ikhlaas: It is to single out Allaah – free from all imperfection – in one’s intention (qasd) in one’s obedience (to Him).
Maymun ibnu Mihram said:
Perhaps a person will do a small action that will be magnified on account of his intention and sincerity. Perhaps a person will do a large action that will be shrunken and will be made nothing on account of his insincerity to Allaah.
So for example, in giving da’wah, he does not seek praise from the people, nor money, nor does he seek status or leadership or position. Rather, he invites to Allaah alone, not seeking praise or wealth or status, and he does not invite to hizbiyyah, or bid’ah.
Shaikh Muhammad ibn ‘Abdul-Wahhab al-Wasabee (hafidhahullaah) said:
Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullaahu ta’aalaa) said in his valuable book Iqtidaa` as-Siraatul-Mustaqeem, page 453:
Whoever calls to other than Allaah has associated (Ashrak), and whoever calls without His Permission has innovated (Ibtida’), and Shirk is Bid’ah, and the Mubtadi’ (innovator) leads himself to Shirk, and you will not find an innovator except that you find in him a certain type and category of Shirk…
I [Shaikh Muhammad ibn Abdul-Wahhab al-Wasabee] say: “So let the Muslim take great care and caution that he may call the people to Hizbiyyah (partisanship) or to innovation (Bid’ah). And it is upon him to call the people to their Creator (subhaanahu wa ta’aalaa) with what He has Legislated, and not with innovations (Bid’ah) and desires (Ahwaa`).
And the statement of Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah is taken from the statement of Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aalaa):
Or have they partners with Allaah (false gods), who have instituted for them a religion which Allaah has not allowed. (Ash-Shooraa, ayah 21)
Here are some Consequences of Ar-Riyya` (Showing off):
1- Ar-Riyya` is minor shirk – that does not remove one from Islaam – but it is shirk nonetheless, and therefore worse than bid’ah that does not reach the level of kufr, and also worse than major sins such as usury, sodomy, fornication, drinking alcohol, gambling… It can be major shirk, as Shaikh Muhammad ibn ‘Abdul-Wahhab al-Wasaabee (hafidhahullaah) explained:
Ar-riyaa` (showing off) can be from ash-Shirk al-Akbar if a person performs an action only for the people. And it can be from ash-Shirk al-Asghar if a person starts with the right intention, but then ar-riyaa` overcomes him.
2- It nullifies the action. He will not receive a reward on the Day of Judgement for it.
3- Humiliation. Allaah will command him to go to those he showed off for in this world, and see if they have a reward for him. And as the scholars explained, Allaah will also expose this person in this world.
4- It may be a cause of entering the hellfire – aoodhubillaah! – even if it is not forever.
5- It can lead to hypocrisy – aoodhubillaah! – since the hypocrites do deeds to be seen by men, while they disbelieve. And the hypocrites, of course, will be in the lowest level of the hellfire.
And refuge in Allaah is sought from falling into ar-Riyya`, and that which ar-Riyya` may lead to.
Internet Source : salafitalk.net
Other Sources used: a Masjid Rahmah tape Milestones of Rectification (as Abu Uwais (rahimahullaah) said, “the good Milestones, not the bad Milestones” meaning not the evil and wicked book of Sayyid Qutb, similarly titled)
Subhanak Allaahuma wa bihamdika ash-hadu anlaa illaaha illa anta astaghfiruka wa atubu ilayk
If I said anything correct, then it is from Allaah (subhanahu wa taa’ala), and if I erred, then that is from me and shaytan.