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Allah’s Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him) said,

“A servant will have his rank raised and will say, ‘O my Lord how has this come about for me?’ He says, ‘through your sons after you seeking forgiveness for you'”

[ibn Majah]

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Ibn Al-Qayyim Al-Jawziyyah – rahimahullaah – said:

Your life in the present moment is in between the past and the future. So what has preceded can be rectified by tawbah (repentance), nadam (regret) and istighfar(seeking Allaah’s forgiveness). And this is something that will neither tire you, nor cause you to toil as you would with strenuous labour. Rather it is an action of the heart. Then as regards the future (then it can be corrected) by withholding yourself from sins. And this abandonment is merely the leaving of something and to be at ease from it. This also is not action of the limbs, which requires you to strive and toil. Rather this is a firm resolve and intention of the heart – which will give rest to your body, heart and thoughts. So as for what has preceded, then you rectify it with repentance. And as for the future – then you rectify it with firm resolve and intention. Neither of these involves any hardship or exertion of the limbs. But then your attention must be directed to your life in the present – the time between two times. If you waste it, then you have wasted the opportunity to be of the fortunate and saved ones. If you look after it, having rectified the two times – what is before and after it, as we have said – then you will be successful and achieve rest, delight and ever-lasting bliss. However, looking after it is harder than that which comes before and after it, since guarding it involves keeping to that which is most befitting and beneficial for your soul, and that which will bring it success and well-being.

Al-Fawaa’id, pp 151-152

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By Ibn Taymiyyah

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Merciful, the Bestower of Mercy.  Indeed Allaah – to whom belongs all praise – has bestowed upon me immense grace, great favours and generous blessings which necessitates immense gratitude, being firm upon obedience to Him, and becoming accustomed to having beautiful patience in that which He ordered.  Indeed, a servant is ordered to have sabr (patience) in times of ease more so than in times of hardship.  Allaah – the Most High – said:

“But if we let man taste the good favours after poverty and harm have touched him, he is sure to boastfully say: Harm has departed from me.  Indeed he is exultant, boastful and ungrateful to Allaah, except for those who observe patience and perform righteous deeds, for them will be forgiveness and a great reward.” [Soorah Hood 11:10-11]

And you all know that Allaah – the Most Perfect – has blessed this affair [2] with such blessings which contain the means to aid His Religion, raise high His Word, aid His Army, and grant honour to His Awliyaa’ (pious and righteous servants).  It is also the cause for strengthening Ahlus-Sunnah wal-Jamaa’ah and causing humiliation to the people of innovations and sectarianism.  Likewise, it is also the cause of affirming that which has been affirmed by yourselves from the Sunnah (regarding the truth of this matter), and a cause for increasing this by opening up the avenues of guidance, victory and proofs; such that the truth becomes known to the people, who none but Allaah can enumerate.  It is also a cause for the masses to begin to accept the way of the Sunnah and the Jamaa’ah; as well as countless other favours.  All of this must therefore be accompanied by immense gratitude to Allaah, as well as having patience – even if this patience is in times of ease.

And you all know that from the great principles which sum up the Religion are: Uniting the hearts, unifying the word, and reconciling between each other, as Allaah – the Most High – said:

“So fear and obey Allaah, and reconcile the matters of difference between yourselves.” [Sooratul-Anfaal 8:10]

“And hold fast together to the Rope of Allaah and do not split up.” [Soorah Aali-‘Imraan 3:103]

“And do not be like those who split up and differed after clear proofs came to them.  For those there will be a severe punishment.” [Soorah Aali-‘Imraan 3:105]

And other examples like this from the texts (of Revelation), which order us with the Jamaa’ah (upon the way of the Companions) and coming together, and prohibit splitting and differing.  And the people who most exemplify this principle are Ahlul-Jamaa’ah (the people of the Jamaa’ah), just as the people who most exemplify leaving it are the people of sectarianism.

And that which sums up the Sunnah is: obedience to the Messenger.  This is why the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said, “Indeed Allaah is pleased with three things: That you worship Allaah alone without associating any partner along with Him; that you hold fast altogether to the Rope of Allaah and not to become split up; and that you give sincere advise to whomever Allaah put in charge of your affairs.” [3]

And in the Sunan collections from the hadeeth of Zayd Ibn Thaabit and Ibn Mas’ood – who were both great fuqahaa‘ (Scholars of deep understanding) – who relate that the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said, “May Allaah enliven whosoever hears my words, memorizes them and conveys them to others.  Many a carrier of knowledge does not understand it, and many a carrier of knowledge carries it to o­ne who has better understanding.  There are three things which the heart of the Believer has no malice about: Sincerity for Allaah in o­ne’s action; sincere advice to those in authority, and clinging to the Jamaa’ah.” [4]

And his saying, ‘…has no malice,’ means not having any contempt for them.  So the heart of a Muslim does not have these characteristics.  o­n the contrary, it loves and is pleased with them.

So the first thing which I shall begin with regarding this principle is what is connected to myself.  So you all should know – may Allaah be pleased with you all – that I do not desire any harm at all – inwardly, nor outwardly – for anyone from amongst the general masses of the Muslims, let alone our colleagues and companions.  Nor do I harbour any ill-feeling towards any o­ne of them, nor do I blame them for anything at all.  Rather, to me they are deserving of nobility, love, honour and respect, over and over – each in accordance to their level.  And a person cannot be except (one of three types): Someone who sincerely strives to ascertain the truth; and is correct, or o­ne who sincerely strives to ascertain the truth; but errs, or a sinful person.  As for the first, then he is rewarded and thanked.  The second is rewarded for his ijtihaad (striving to ascertain the truth), and is forgiven and excused for his error.  As for the third, then may Allaah forgive us, and him, and all the Believers.

So we should try not to dwell upon the words of those who opposed this fundamental; by saying that so and so is deficient, or so and so did not act, or so and so was the cause of harm to the Shaykh, or was the reason why all this occurred, or so and so used to speak about the plots of so and so; and other such similar statements which contain criticism of some of our colleagues and brothers.  For indeed I do not allow them to harm the brothers and colleagues in this manner, and there is no might, nor power, except with Allaah. [5] Rather, the likes of this criticism usually returns to the o­ne who said it in the first place, unless he has good deeds by which Allaah will forgive him – if He wills – and indeed Allaah does forgive that which has preceded.  And you also all know about the harsh treatment that was given to some of the brothers in Damascus, and that which occurs even now in Egypt.  This – in reality – is not due to a deficiency or shortcoming in the brothers, nor has it occurred because we have changed our views and hate them.  Rather, such people, after receiving such harsh treatment, increase in the status, love, and respect that we have for them.  For indeed, the likes of these trials are beneficial to the Believers, because Allaah corrects and improves them due to it.  Since the Believer to another Believer is like each of a pair of hands, each washes the other.  However, it happens that sometimes happens that dirt cannot be removed except with a certain amount of roughness, but that brings about cleanliness and softness, for which that roughness is praised.

You (also) all know that much of what has occurred in this matter were lies, false accusations, false suspicions, and the following of false desires, the likes of which cannot be described.  So all those lies and false accusations that were directed against me, were actually a source of goodness and blessing for me.  Allaah – the Most High – said:

“Indeed those who brought forward the lie are a small group amongst you.  However, do not think that it is an evil for you.  Rather, it is good for you.  And every person from amongst them will be paid the sin of what they earned.  And as for the o­ne who took o­n the leading role in this, his will be a severe punishment.” [Soorat An-Noor 24:11]

So though such trials, Allaah manifests the light of truth and its clear proofs, which repel the falsehood and lies.  So I do not take revenge upon any of those who lied against me, oppressed me, or showed enmity and hatred towards me.  For indeed I forgive every Muslim, and I love o­nly the good for them, and I desire for every Muslim the good that I desire for myself.  And as for those who lied and did wrong, then I have excused and forgiven them.  However, whatever is connected to violating the Rights of Allaah in this affair, then they should seek tawbah (repentance).  So if they turn to Allaah in repentance, then Allaah will turn to them in forgiveness, otherwise, the Judgement of Allaah will apply to them.  So if a person were to be thanked for his evil actions, then I thank all those who were the cause for this (trial) to happen to me – for it entails all the good of this world and the Hereafter.  However, Allaah is thanked for His good blessing and favour by which no affair happens to a Believer, except that, there is good for him in it.  And the people of good intentions are thanked for their intentions, and the people of good actions are thanked for their actions.  As for those who did evil – then we ask Allaah that He turns to them in forgiveness.  And you all know that this is from my nature and character.

Likewise, you all know that Aboo Bakr as-Siddeeq (radiyallaahu ‘anhu), concerning the matter of al-Ifq (the lie against ‘Aa‘ishah, his daughter, the wife of the Prophet), about which Allaah revealed some aayaat of the Qur‘aan, so he swore that he would not give anymore charity to Mistaah Ibn Athaathah, because Mistaah was o­ne of those who participated in the lie.  So Allaah revealed:

“And let not those amongst you who have been blessed with grace and wealth swear not to give any wealth or support to their relatives, or to the poor and needy, or to those who migrated in the Path of Allaah.  Rather, let them pardon and be forgiving.  Do you not love that Allaah should forgive you?  And Allaah is Oft-Forgiving, Most-Merciful.” [Soorat An-Noor 24:22]

So when this aayah was revealed, Aboo Bakr (radiyallaahu ‘anhu) said, “Rather, by Allaah!  I love that Allaah should forgive me.”  So he continued to give to Mistaah the aid and charity that he used to give before. [6] So with forgiveness and kind treatment towards o­ne another, and carrying out Jihaad (fighting and striving) in the Path of Allaah, then it is a must that:

“Allaah will bring a people whom He will love, and love Him; soft, humble and gentle with the Believers, stern towards the unbelievers, fighting the Path of Allaah, and never afraid of the blame of the blamers.  That is the Grace of Allaah that He bestows upon whomsoever He wills.  And Allaah suffices for the needs of His creation, the All-Knower.  Indeed your Walee (protector and guardian) is Allaah, His Messenger and the Believers; those who offer the Prayer correctly, and give Zakaat, and who bow down in obedience to Allaah.  And whoever takes Allaah, and His Messenger, and the Believers as protectors and guardians, then it is the party of Allaah who will be victorious.” [Sooratul-Maa‘idah 55:53]

Was-salaamu ‘alaykum wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuhu.

Footnotes:

[1] Majmoo’ul-Fataawaa (28/50-57), slightly abridged.

[2] The affair being referred to is the first of Ibn Taymiyyah’s unjust imprisonment – a period of o­ne and a half years, in the year 705H – which occurred due to some lies and false accusations against him.

[3] Related by Muslim (3/1340) and Ahmad (2/367).

[4] Saheeh: Related by Ahmad (4/80) and Ibn Maajah (no. 320).  It was authenticated by al-Albaanee in as-Saheehah (no. 404).

[5] This is in reference to some of their colleagues and brothers in Damascus, who weakened during this ordeal, and did not remain firm upon the correct methodology.  So Ibn Taymiyyah is prohibiting any of his students and colleagues from harming them in any way, and he makes an excuse for them, and explains that he bears no ill-feeling or hatred in his heart towards any of them.  Rather, he makes it clear that he has respect for them, and that he loves them for the sake of Allaah.

[6] Related by al-Bukhaaree (no. 4757).

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Shaykh Ibn Baaz ,

Al-Istiqaamah Magazine, Issue No.6 – Dhul-Qa’dah 1417H / March 1997

[Q]: I am a young man, nineteen years of age, and have involved myself in a great deal of sin. Even to the extent that I do not pray most of my Prayers in the mosque, and I have never completely fasted the month of Ramadaan in my entire life. Besides these, I have committed other sins as well. I have vowed to repent many times before, however, after doing so I lapse back into these same sins. The youths of my area are just as bad, as are the friends that I associate with. And Allaah knows that I have transgressed against myself and that whenever I repent, I return back to the same sins. I hope that you may direct me to a path that will bring me closer to my Lord and distance me from these evil actions of mine.

[A]: Allaah – the Might and Majestic – says: “Say O My Slaves who have transgressed against their own souls! Do not despair of Allaah’s mercy. Indeed Allaah forgives all sins, Truly He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Soorah az-Zumar 39:53]. There is a consensus from the Scholars that this noble aayah (verse) was revealed for the taa’ibeen (those who repent). So whoever sincerely repents from his sins, then Allaah will forgive him all his sins, as occurs in the saving of Allaah – the Most Perfect – : “O you who Believe! Turn to Allaah in sincere repentance. Perhaps your Lord may remove from you your sins and admit you into Paradise beneath which rivers flow.” [Soorah at-Tahreem 66:8]. So in this aayah (verse), Allaah has made the removal of sins and entry into Paradise dependant upon sincere repentance.

And sincere repentance is conditional upon: [i] abandoning the sin and keeping away from it, [ii] having regret and remorse for committing the sin, [iii] truly intending not to commit the sin again, [iv] remembering the greatness of Allaah and hoping for His reward, whilst fearing His punishment. Another condition for sincere repentance is that if due to transgression, the wealth or property of someone has been stolen or usurped, then it must be returned or forgiveness must be sought from the one whose wealth, blood or honour has been taken. However, if the honour of a person has been violated and the situation is such that it is not possible to seek that persons forgiveness, then plenty of du’aa (supplication) should be made for his welfare and he should be spoken good of in those places where he had previously been backbitten, since good deeds wipe away bad ones. Allaah – the Most Perfect – said: “Turn you all in repentance to Allaah, O Believers, in order that you may be successful.” [Soorah an-Noor 24:31]. So in this aayah (verse) Allaah the Mighty and Majestic – linked success with tawbah (repentance) and points to the fact that the repentant person will reach success and happiness, and if such a person were to follow up this repentance with eemaan (faith) and doing righteous actions, then Allaah would efface his evil actions and change them to good actions, as Allaah the Most Perfect – said after mentioning the sins of Shirk (directing worship that is due only for Allaah to other than Allaah), taking a life without just cause and fornication and adultery-: “And whoever does this, will receive the punishment, The punishment will be doubled for him on the Day of Judgement and he will live therein in disgrace. Except for those who repent, have eemaan (faith) and do righteous actions. For them Allaah will change their evil deeds into good ones, and Allaah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Soorah al-Furqaan 25:68-70]

And from the causes of tawbah (repentance) are humility and submissiveness to Allaah – the Most Perfect – and asking Allaah for guidance and ability, and that acceptance of one’s repentance is considered as a Favour from Allaah, as Allaah – the Most Perfect – said: ‘‘Call upon Me and I will respond to your supplication.” [Soorah Ghaafir 40:60] And He – the Mighty and Majestic – said: “And when My servant asks you concerning Me, say to them that I am indeed near, And I respond to the supplication of the one who supplicates to Me.” [Soorah al-Baqarah 2:186]. Also, from the causes of tawbah is choosing good companionship and friendship and following them in righteous conduct, whilst staying clear of bad companionship. It is authentically related from Allaah’s Messenger sallaallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam that he said: “A person is upon the way of life of his friend, so let one of you look to whom he keeps as a friend.”2 And the Prophetsallaallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam also said: “The example of a good companion and a bad companion is like that of a seller of musk, and the one who blows the blacksmith’s bellows. As for the seller of musk, then either he will grant you some, or at the very least you enjoy a pleasant smell from him. As for the one who blows the blacksmith’s bellows, then either he will burn your clothes or you will get an offensive smell from him.”3


1. Al-Fataawaa (1/251-253)
2. Hasan: Related by Abu Dawood (no.4812) and others, from Abu Hurayrah radiallaahu ‘anhu. Imaam an-Nawawee authenticated it in Riyaadus-Saaliheen (no.174).
3. Related by al-Bukhaaree (4/323) and Muslim (no.2628), from Abu Moosaa al-Asharee radiallaahu ‘anhu.

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