Bismillaah Al-Hamdulillaah wa salatu wa salaamu ‘ala rasulullaah
Rectifying The Hearts
by Shaikh Muhammad bin ‘Abdillaah al-Imaam (hafidhahullaah)
After khutbat al-hajjah, the shaikh said:
O Muslims, this khutbah is about the circumstances of mankind, the circumstances of the hearts of mankind in front of the Lord of all that exists, [on] a Day when mankind will meet Allaah. And He is the One Who called and invited us to all warn and admonish ourselves from that which we are about to hear of matters of the utmost importance.
The first matter is that the righteous actions of the limbs will not be sufficient – and [will be] of no use – unless the actions are flowing from a righteous heart. So whenever, the heart is unrighteous, then there is neither reliance nor any consideration of the actions of the limbs, whose exterior appears to be righteous.
Imams Bukhari and Muslim recorded from the hadeeth of Nu’man ibn Basheer that the Messenger (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:
Verily within the body is a morsel of flesh. Whenever it is sound, the whole body will be righteous and sound. And whenever it becomes corrupted, then the whole body will become corrupted. It is the heart.
And the second matter is that the wicked actions of the heart, and those hearts that oppose the legislation of Allaah are greater (and worse) than the actions of the limbs that oppose the legislation of Allaah. Our Lord says, informing us of the hearts of the disbelievers and the munafiqeen (hypocrites):
O you who believe! Do not take as advisors and consultants (and friends) those outside your religion (disbelievers and hypocrites) since they will not fail to do their best to corrupt you. They desire to harm you severely. Hatred has already appeared from their mouths, but what their breasts conceal is far worse… (Aali ‘Imran, ayah 118)
And Allaah ‘azza wa jall’s statement that was mentioned – but what their breasts conceal is far worse – means that it is (worse) than their outward actions of disbelief (polytheism, associating partners with Allaah ‘azza wa jall) and all types of treachery. And in spite of this, their evil and disbelieving and polytheistic actions of the heart are greater than that which they manifest on their limbs. And like this, as well as anyone who conceals in his heart evil, so his evil which lies within his heart is (far) greater than the evil which he manifests on his limbs.
And the third matter, and it is an important and great matter, which is necessary for every Muslim – male and female – to learn, indeed it is that Allaah will make apparent the actions of the heart concerning good and evil deeds on the Day of Judgement.
Then the person who has a wicked heart will be disgraced in front of all of humanity, all of creation! Hence, the actions of the heart – that which angers Allaah and wages war against Allaah, and no one is able to be aware of that except for Allaah ‘azza wa jall – will be present on the Day of Resurrection.
That person will be disgraced.
How many people in the dunya think it will be easier (more likely) to have the earth swallow him up than people becoming aware of his evil intentions, his corrupted goals. And suddenly, on the Day of Resurrection, he will be disgraced before all of creation.
Hence, from here o Muslims, we are in an urgent and desperate need to know the circumstances of the one who will meet Allaah ‘azza wa jall and (that person’s) heart had already been corrupted. And some of the diseases which penetrated his heart from that which entered upon it.
The Lord of all that exists said in His Noble Book:
And does he not know that when the contents of the graves are brought out and poured forth (all mankind is resurrected). And that which is in the breasts (of men) shall be made known. Verily, that Day (Day of Resurrection) their Lord will be Well-Acquainted with them. (Al-‘Adiyat, ayat 9-11)
The shahid (reference point) is the statement of Allaah ‘azza wa jall: And that which is in the breasts (of men) shall be made known. And the meaning of that is: it will be made apparent, and will be gathered – whatever is in the breast of mankind, pertaining to what it concealed and kept secret. Afterwards, those things will become apparent on the Day of Resurrection. On the person’s pages. On the pages on his neck (with) which he will carry his sins and crimes on the Last Day.
The Lord of all that exists said in His Noble Book:
The Day when all the secrets will be examined, then man will have no power, nor any helper. (At-Tariq, ayat 9-10)
The meaning of examining the secrets (ikhtibaar a saraair) is that Allaah will inspect and scrutinize the hearts. The inspection of the hearts on the Day of Resurrection is not the inspection of the eyes, nor is it the inspection of the ears, nor the limbs. It is only an inspection of the hearts, which was a vessel for many deeds – either good or bad.
Therefore – there on the Day of Resurrection – the hearts will be scrutinized. Allaah will inspect them, and He will make manifest what lies therein of what was concealed in this dunya.
Woe to whosoever’s heart will be examined on the Day of Resurrection, and his heart had embraced evil and immoralities and corruptions that Allaah subhanahu wa ta’aala has knowledge of. This examining will be crucial on the Day of Resurrection, when the person will be disgraced, and his secrets will be exposed. So that it will become disgraceful, bare and apparent for all of creation to see.
The Lord of all that exists said in His Noble Book:
That Day shall you be brought to Judgement, not a secret of you will be hidden. (Al-Haqqah, ayah 18)
Who will the deeds be displayed before? They will be displayed before The Knower of the undisclosed and secret conversations, The One Who has knowledge of whatever is throughout the heavens and the earth. [They will be displayed] before The One Who not a single secret is concealed from Him. [They will be displayed] before The One Who knows what the souls whisper. The display of deeds will be before Him on that Day. The apparent and secret deeds will be made laid open to Him.
Likewise, the Lord of all that exists said in His Noble Book:
And warn them (O Muhammad) of the Day that is drawing near (i.e. the Day of Resurrection), when the hearts will be choking the throats, and they can neither return them (hearts) to their chests nor can they throw them out. There will be no friend, nor an intercessor for the Dhalimun (polytheists and wrong-doers, etc.), who could be given concern to. Allaah knows the fraud of the eyes, and all that the breasts conceal. And Allaah judges with truth… (Ghafir, ayat 18-20)
Meaning, He will judge the eye of what it betrayed. He will judge the heart, the breast, which concealed that which angered Allaah, the Lord of all that exists. He will judge with truth.
So look at the circumstances of those individual’s hearts, which were filled with diseases and illnesses and sicknesses, hence the state of these hearts on the Day of Resurrection is that of discomfort, alarm, dread… It’s better that the heart will tear out of its place, due to the severity of the horror on the Day of Resurrection. Hence, the Noble Verse says:
And warn them (O Muhammad) of the Day that is drawing near (i.e. the Day of Resurrection), when the hearts will be choking the throats, meaning the hearts had reached their throats. What made the hearts reach their throats? Dread on the Day. [Dread] of what? Dread of the circumstances from that Day. Dread of its severities. Dread of the humiliations of shameful things, and dread of the deeds, which these wicked hearts had done. And suddenly, the heart’s circumstances will change to become what you have just heard.
And Allaah subhanahu wa ta’aala says:
There will be no friend, nor an intercessor for the Dhalimun (polytheists and wrong-doers, etc.), who could be given concern to. Allaah knows the fraud of the eyes, and all that the breasts conceal.
The meaning of the verse is that anything that the hearts have concealed, it will become apparent on that Day. And the person will be disgraced on that day. And he will be called to account on that day, if he meets Allaah with that.
The Lord of all that exists said in His Noble Book, informing us about His righteous servants:
Men whom neither trade nor sale diverts them from the Remembrance of Allaah (with heart and tongue), nor from performing As-Salat, nor from giving the Zakat. They fear a Day when hearts and eyes will be overturned (from the horror of the torment of the Day of Resurrection). (An-Nur, ayah 37)
The hearts will toss and turn from the intensity of the horrors. There is no safety on that Day, for the hearts which did not ensure the future, that they did not ensure safety for themselves on that tremendous Day. Hence, the pious believer will never be content [in this world, fearing] that he will be from those who will be disgraced. Among those whose circumstances will be exposed, and his evil made apparent to the cration and humanity.
How many people had good opinion of the dunya, and had confidence in the dunya…and did not notice what was in their soul, what was in their hearts from that which will anger Allaah, the Lord of all that exists. Hence, they will see it on the Day of Resurrection. Perhaps, many of them will be disgraced. Many of them will be pushed away and made distant from Allaah.
Therefore, these are the circumstances of the hearts on that Day, (hearts) which will be resurrected and will meet the Lord of all that exists with that which angers Him subhanahu wa ta’aala. How numerous are the corruptions and diseases which creep into our hearts? Moreover, diseases of the heart are very dangerous upon the person. Therefore, whoever does not hasten to rectify his heart, then he will meet Allaah ‘azza wa jall with a heart that has been filled with illnesses and diseases, which Allaah subhanahu wa ta’aala has made unlawful.
For this reason, o brothers in Islam, I will mention to you all some examples of the one whose heart has embraced some evil. And no one knows except for Allaah subhanahu wa ta’aala.
The deceitful person who intends treachery toward someone by killing him or by snatching his wealth, or hitting him, or double-crossing him in his religion. What is important is how numerous or what some people will aspire to evil, by way of deceit. Its origin is an action of the heart, and it is that the person intends and makes up in his mind to do some evil act in secret and concealed manner so that he will not be humiliated or his matter will not be made public to the people.
Let us listen to one example from the circumstances of these individuals. Imams Bukhari and Muslim recorded from the hadeeth of Abu Bakrata that the Messenger of Allaah (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said, When two Muslims encounter each other with swords, the murderer and the slain one are both in the hellfire. So I said, o Messenger of Allaah. This murderer (he entered the hellfire properly so). So what is the matter with the one who was slain? What is his case? His soul was snatched, and because of this he was wronged. So how will he enter the hellfire? He (the Prophet) said, “Because he was eager to kill his companion.”
He was eager, his eagerness was in his heart. He was waiting for an opportunity to double-cross his brother. Hence, that brother carried out and killed him, therefore that eagerness which was in his heart tested him and it was the reason for him entering the hellfire.
O servants of Allaah, how numerous is what some of the people strive to do in these ways that have evil consequences upon the people who do this whether they realize it or not, in the dunya as well as the hereafter.
So how many individuals tread on this path of deceit and trickery while thinking that he will not be disgraced in the dunya, hence he will be humiliated in the dunya – even after some time passes. Then, he will be disgraced on the Day of the meeting with Allaah, Lord of all that exists, subhanahu wa ta’aala.
So o Muslim, cleanse your heart. Do not intend anything except for good. Do not love or like or incline toward anything except that which is good. And do not reply with anything except for good. And do not seek for anything except for the good.
And whenever you argue and dispute with the people, then do not ever be content that you tread [transgress] to obtain your haqq (your right), or that you aid yourself to enter a path that Allaah made unlawful for you from outrage, oppression, deceit and destruction.
It comes from the hadeeth narrated by ‘A`ishah and ‘Abdullaah ibn Zubair (radiallaahu ‘anhum) and others that the Messenger (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: Al-Eeman binds destruction. Meaning whosever’s Eeman is strengthened, then he will not kill the people, nor will he mislead them or act dishonest toward them, or act immoral to them, or steal their wealth in a cunning way, or other than that, because he fears Allaah (Who is) observing him.
Therefore, look at the one who will meet Allaah and he only has this action among the actions of the heart. How would the case be? If his heart was filled with wicked deeds, evil intentions, destructive goals.. How will be his circumstances?
Another example about this matter.
Our Lord says in His Noble Book:
Verily, those who like that (the crime of) illegal sexual intercourse should be propagated among those who believe, they will have a painful torment in this world and in the Hereafter. And Allaah knows and you know not.
(An-Nur, ayah 19)
He – Allaah – has knowledge of the hearts that like abominations and evil deeds, although the hearts do not show it and although they did not show these abominations. Except that He – Allaah – has knowledge of what is within the hearts of having love and liking abominations and evil.
Therefore, whoever meets Allaah while liking some abominations and some detestable things, then he will be punished in the hereafter. You have [just] heard the verse, what Allaah subhanahu wa ta’aala said:
They will have a painful torment in this world and in the Hereafter.
Thus, it should be dreaded for you that He subhanahu wa ta’aala will punish and humiliate you on that Day. Thus, o slaves of Allaah, supplicate to Allaah ‘azza wa jall that He mends your heart for you.
So you do not be content that you like corruption or wickedness. Yes, this is an enormous evil and a deficiency within you and in your heart when what is requested is that your heart is filled with love of Allaah, glorifying Him, fearing Him, [knowing] He is observing you.
Therefore, how will this heart become? What you have heard is a resting place and a vessel for liking detestable things and abominations. So cleanse your hearts from these plagues and diseases, and many abominations which those individuals will fall into, having love for it, or having love for some of it. This also, just as you have heard, is from that which will humiliate the slave on the Day of Resurrection. And that will appear on his heart.
As for whoever calls to abominations, fornication, intoxications, stealing, homosexuality and so forth, then his action is more atrocious than that individual who conceals that in his heart and does not act according to that on his limbs.
Likewise, also from the dangerous actions of the heart upon the person on the Day of Resurrection is what comes in the hadeeth of Ibn Mas’ood in Sahih Muslim that the Messenger (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: No one will enter Paradise who has within his heart an atom’s weight of arrogance.
An atom’s weight of arrogance.
So how is the case if the heart is filled with arrogance? If an atom’s weight of arrogance is a cause for being deprived from Paradise and a cause for entering the hellfire, then how much for the one whose heart is filled and overwhelming with arrogance? Refuge in Allaah is sought! Until you can smell the scent of arrogance from his speech, his actions and spending. Therefore, this matter is more dangerous on the Day of Resurrection. And atom’s weight of arrogance will cause his entering the hellfire.
How enormous of what has slipped out of our minds, and caused us to be heedless of mending our hearts. Then it is possible that this chronic disease – arrogance – is within us, and refuge in Allaah is sought from that. Or a portion of arrogance, and refuge in Allaah is sought. So cleanse your heart, if you want to know that Allaah has assisted you against your heart.
So because of that, you cleansed it – your heart – of arrogance. Hence, you will know that from the way that you accept the truth, the lack of your opposition against the truth, the absence of annoyance in your heart from the truth. Your heart is open toward the truth. It desires the truth, loves to aspire to and attain the truth.
Hence when the heart becomes just as you have heard, then your heart is upon good. For this reason, the Messenger (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:
Arrogance is to reject the truth and to belittle the people.
Therefore, when you do not look down on the people, you don’t mock them, nor establish yourself to be exalted over them and superior over them, you only have compassion for the people, to be friendly toward them, to be kind to the people, and that you stay clear of the evil of the people, and the fitan, the trials accompanied by the people. So, if you are like this – you are friendly to them – then you are upon good.
And how abundant are the diseases of the hearts, the diseases that we fear we may meet Allaah with? If that is the case, then we will not have success on that Day. [End of first khutbah]
As to proceed: o believers in Islam, from the principles of mending the hearts and meeting Allaah – the Lord of all that exists – with it is what comes in al-Bazaar and others that the Messenger (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:
Allaah said: I swear by My Might and My Majesty that I will not gather for My slave two securities and two fears. Hence, if he feels safe from Me in the dunya, then I will fill him with fear on the Day that I will gather My slaves. And if he fears Me in the dunya, then I will grant him safety and security on a Day that I will gather My slaves.
Therefore, fearing Allaah (Who is) observing you and fearing Allaah by way of having knowledge of Him, these are a basis towards all good. And for this reason, the ‘ulemma (scholars) said in an explanation of a person fearing (having khawf for) Allaah and in an explanation of the word khawf: it is he who has made up his mind to do an act of disobedience and then afterwards, he remembers Allaah, he then refrains from disobedience.
The one who fears Allaah is the one who remembers Allaah, then hastens to leave off acts of disobedience. He avoids it. He stands distant from it. He responds to the call of Allaah tabarak wa ta’aala. He fulfills the religious duties that Allaah, the Lord of all that exists, has placed upon him. Therefore, the person who lives in the dunya, fearing Allaah, knowing that Allaah is always observing him, fearing the chastisement of Allaah, hoping for Allaah’s mercy and compassion. It is hoped on that Day that (this slave’s) heart will be amongst those hearts that will be saved and rescued, because of Allaah’s mercy.
For this reason, Allaah says in His Noble Book:
But for him who fears the standing before his Lord, there will be two Gardens (i.e. in Paradise). (Ar-Rahman, ayah 46) Meaning the one who fears the standing before Allaah, (fearing) the hisab (the accounting) on the Day of Reckoning. The one who fears this meeting and remains consistently fearing that his reckoning will be bad – that Allaah will hold him to account severely and intensly. And by the Permission of Allaah subhanahu wa ta’aala, he will be rescued on that day, a Day when the liars will be ruined, a Day when the oppressors will bite their hands, a Day when the excuses of the oppressors will not be of any use to them; they will have a curse placed upon them, and they will have an abode of evil and wickedness.
The Lord of all that exists said in His Noble Book, informing what Ibrahim (‘alaihi salaam) said to Allaah Subhanahu wa ta’aala:
And disgrace me not on the Day when (all the creatures) will be resurrected. The Day whereon neither wealth nor sons will avail, Except him who brings to Allaah a clean (undamaged) heart [clean from Shirk (polytheism) and Nifaaq (hypocrisy)]. (Ash-Shu’ara, ayat 87-89)
Except him who brings to Allaah a clean (undamaged) heart.
We beg Allaah that He mends and rectifies our hearts.
The scholars have said concerning the words a clean (undamaged) heart in the tafseer:
It is a heart which is devoid and protected from diseases and illnesses.
The Lord of all that exists said in His Noble Book:
And Paradise will be brought near to the Muttaqun, not far off. (Qaf 50, ayah 31)
This is what has been promised to everyone who returns to Allaah and repents, and preserves the rights of Allaah.
So look at your hearts. Is it returning to Allaah in repentance and (returning to) the truth? Is it devoted to Allaah, hoping for the mercy and compassion of Allaah? Is it fearing the punishment of Allaah?
O slaves of Allaah! The hearts are blazing with envy, blazing with hatred, hypocrisy, Ar-riyaa` (showing off), amazement with oneself, arrogance, being delusional, and having a liking or love for forbidden desires and detestable deeds. The hearts are burning with desires for the dunya, desiring for angering The Creator – Allaah!
It comes in the hadeeth narrated by ‘A`ishah (radiallaahu ‘anha) in at-Tirmidhee and Abu Na’eem that the Messenger (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: Whoever seeks to please Allaah by displeasing the people, Allaah will be pleased with him and cause the people to be pleased with him. And whoever seeks to please the people by displeasing Allaah, Allaah will be displeased with him and cause the people to be displeased with him.
Wanting to please the people – this is among the actions of the heart. So you will see your Muslim brother doing an act of good, similar to that which you were doing; however if there lies in his heart to do some harm to such and such person by way of this good deed, then that person will be amongst the losers on the Last Day.
Some of the people are pleased with the people who do evil. Their desire is to harm the people. This sin of his is greater than the one who falls into evil while not desiring the people’s contentment. Yes, his soul is inclined toward evil in inviting him to it until he fell into that. Therefore, be cautious of these diseases and trials.
Allaah says regarding a people who neglect their hearts, people whom Allaah did not want their hearts to be cleansed:
Then what is the recompense of those who do so among you, except disgrace in the life of this world, and on the Day of Resurrection they shall be consigned to the most grievous torment. And Allaah is not unaware of what you do. (Al-Baqarah, ayah 85)
Therefore, we should hasten to rectify and mend our hearts, and we have discovered a path towards that. And we should not delay. If this is the circumstance of the one who meets Allaah with some of the diseases within his heart, so how then is the case of the one who meets Allaah and his heart has already become sick and ill from shirk, liking acts of shirk, superstition, magic, those who predict the future by using the stars. In addition, they like them and their actions, or he likes the atheist who curses the Deen of Islam, who curses Allaah, who curses the Messenger of Allaah. They speak evil about the legislation of Islam. Yes, how will his circumstance be if he loves the Jews and the Christians? Aoodhubillaah!
How numerous and abundant are the corruptions within the hearts of some of the Muslims? Therefore, I call myself and my believing brothers to hasten to rectify our hearts.
The hearts are corrupted by many things. And among them are the mixing of evil deeds with good deeds, and among them are listening to the speech of the wicked and evil people on television (and satelite), reading newspapers which pollute, sicken and destroy what you have kept safe and maintained in your hearts.
O slave of Allaah! You have one heart. It can only contain good or evil. You are not able to gather within your heart good and evil at the same time. The heart cannot bear this. And He, The Most High, said in His Noble Book:
Allaah has not put for any man two hearts inside his body. (Al-Ahzab, ayah 4)
Hence, some of the people think that they can take from the good and evil like this. They think that this is smart. They think that this is understanding of the matters related to good and evil. And they think that this way has superceeded those who want to rectify their hearts, and those individuals who stay away from those things that will ruin his heart.
Allaahumma nas`aluka huda wa tuqqa wal ‘afaafa wal ghina (O Allaah, we ask you for guidance and piety and well-being and sifficiency.)
Source: Rectifying The Hearts, a Masjidullaah CD, Richmond, VA