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In the Name of God بسم الله
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Abu Nur

"Combat With The Self" By Al-Hurr Al-'amili

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Chapter 4: The Divine Recommendation (Istihbab) to Adopt Praiseworthy Qualities, a Few of Which Are Listed

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Indeed Allah has distinguished His Prophet [saws] with noble, moral traits, so examine yourselves, and if you find yourself possessing any of them, praise Allah, and beseech him to bless you with more of them.” (Then he counted them as being ten: conviction, contentment, patience, gratitude, forbearance, good nature, generosity, self-respect, courage and valour). al-Faqih, v.3, p. 361, no.1714 also in al-Khisal, p. 421, no. 12, Sifat al-Shi’ah p. 47, no. 97, Amali al-Saduq p.184, no.8, Ma’ani al-Akhbar, p.191, no.3, al-Kafi v.2, p.46, no.2

The Holy Prophet [saws] said: “The best of you are men of understanding (ulu al-nuha), upon which he was asked: “O Prophet of Allah, who are the men of understanding?” He replied: “They are those of good moral traits, of composed personalities. They keep up relations with blood relatives, and are kind to their mothers and fathers. They attend to their neighbors and to orphans, and feed people. They spread peace in the world, and pray when the rest of the people are asleep.”” al-Kafi v.2, p.188, no. 32

Imam ‘Ali Zayn al-‘Abidin [a] said: “Indeed, the believer is one who, when he is happy, is not led by his happiness to commit any wrong or indecent act, and if he is angered, is not diverted from telling the truth by his anger, and, when he is empowered, is not led by his power to transgress against that which does not rightfully belong to him.” al-Kafi v.2, p.184, no.13

Imam ‘Ali Zayn al-‘Abidin [a] said: “The believer is a good assistant, unburdened by provisions and stores, yet well-regulated in his livelihood, and he never lets himself be stung (by harsh words) twice.” al-Kafi v.2, p.189, no.38

Imam ‘Ali al-Rida [a] said: “A believer is not a believer until he possess three qualities…: discretion in being able to keep a secret, amiable behavior towards people, and patience during misfortunes and adversities.” al-Kafi v.2, p.184, no.39; ‘Uyun Akhbar al-Rida, v.1, p.256, no.9; Amali al-Saduq, p.270, no.8  

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir [a] said: “The Prophet [saws] addressed Imam ‘Ali [a], saying: “O ‘Ali, I advise you regarding certain traits within yourself that you must uphold”, then he continued, saying: “O Allah, help him! The first one is honesty, such that no lie should ever come out of your mouth; the second, piety, such that you would never have the audacity to deceive; the third, fear of Allah as if you see him; the fourth, weeping a great deal from awe of Allah, as a result which, for every tear you shed, he will build a house for you in Paradise; the fifth one is to spend your wealth and spill your blood for the sake of your religion; the sixth that you adopt my practice (sunnah) in your prayer, your fasting and your charity – your prayer should be fifty units per day; as for fasting, fast on the first and last Thursday and the middle Wednesday of every month; as for charity, give as much as possible, such that one would say: “You are squandering it”, though it will not be considering squandering. I urge you to keep up the night prayer (salat al-layl), keep up the night recitation of the Qur’an at all times. Raise your hands in your prayer, and look at them intently. You must clean your teeth before every prayer. It is incumbent upon you to have good moral traits, so adopt such traits, and you must not possess any bad traits, so repel such traits. If you do not do these thing, then you have no one to blame but yourself.” al-Faqih, v.4, p. 139, no.483;  al-Kafi v.8, p.79, no.33; al-Tahdhib, v.9, p.175, no.713

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] narrated, on the authority of his fathers [a], that Prophet [saws], in his advice to Imam ‘Ali[a], said: “O ‘Ali, three of the noble moral traits in both this world and the next are: pardoning one who has wronged you, reconciliation with one who has cut off relations from you, and clemency towards one who behaves foolishly towards you.” al-Faqih, v.4, p. 257, no.822.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “There are then noble qualities, which, if you can adopt, do so, for they are such that a father may possess them, but not his son, and vice versa, or a slave might possess them, but not a free man. They are: sincerity, truthfulness, reliability, bringing reconciliation between blood relatives, hospitality towards guests, feeding the beggar, repaying a good gesture, concealing the neighbor’s flaws, concealing a companion’s flaws, and – the best of them – modesty.” al-Khisal, p. 431, no. 11; al-Kafi v.2, p.46, no.1; Amali al-Tusi v.1, p.9

Imam ‘Ali Amir al-Mu’minin [a] said: “I will correlate Islam in a way that has neither been done by anyone before me, nor will be done by anyone after me, unless by referring to the same relation – verily Islam is submission, and submission is conviction, and conviction is certification of something, and certification is attestation, and attestation of something is acting upon it, and action is performing required acts. Indeed, the believer does not take his religion as a whim, rather it comes to him from his Lord, and he accepts it…[till the end of the tradition].” al-Kafi v.2, p.38, no.1

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “The Prophet [saws] said : “Islam is naked and its clothing is modesty, its adornment is loyalty, its valour is good deeds, its pillars are piety, and everything has a foundation, and the foundation of Islam is love for us, the Ahl al-Bayt.”” al-Kafi v.2, p.38, no.2

Imam ‘Ali Amir al-Mu’minin [a] said: “The Prophet [saws] said: “Allah [swt] created Islam and made for it a courtyard, a light, a fortress and supporters. Its courtyard is the Qur’an, its light is wisdom, its fortress is good deeds, and its supporters are I, my Ahl al-Bayt and our followers…[till the end of the tradition].” al-Kafi v.2, p.38, no.3

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “You will not achieve righteousness until you have known, and you will not know until you have attained certainty, and you will not attain certainty until you have submitted yourself with respect to four things, each of which is applicable only after having attained the previous one…[till the end of the tradition].” al-Kafi v.2, p.38, no.3

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “The believer must possess eight qualities within himself: he must be composed in times of agitation, tolerant when faced with tribulations, grateful even in the times of prosperity, contented with the sustenance that Allah has provided him, fair towards his enemies; he must not maltreat his friends, his body is worn out because of the way he is, whilst his friends are at ease because of the same.  Knowledge is the intimate friend of the believer, clemency his minister, reason the commander of his troops, gentleness his brother and righteousness his father.” al-Kafi v.2, p.38, no.1, al-Faqih, v.4, p. 255, Amali al-Saduq p.474, no.17; al-Kafi v.2, p.39, no.2

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “ Amir al-Mu’minin [a] said: “Islam has four basic principles: complete reliance on Allah, entrusting all affairs to Allah, satisfaction with the decree of Allah and submission to the will of Allah.” al-Kafi v.2, p.39, no.2

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Amir al-Mu’minin [a] was asked about faith (iman), with regard to which he said: “Allah, Mighty and Exalted, has based faith on four supports: patience, conviction, justice and struggle. Of these, patience branches out into the following: craving, apprehension, abstention and anticipation. Conviction, in turn, branches out into: the enlightenment of perspicacity, the hidden depths of wisdom, knowledge of the underlying moral in everything and the lessons taken from the history of the past peoples. Justice also branches out into four: profound understanding, abundant knowledge, the splendor of authority and the garden of clemency. Struggle, in turn, has the following four branches: enjoying the good, forbidden evil, honesty in difficult situations and repugnance towards the evildoers.”” al-Kafi v.2, p.42, no.1

Imam ‘Ali Zayn al-‘Abidin [a] said: “The believer listens in order to ascertain, and speak in order to gain. Friends do not doubt his fidelity. He does not suppress his testimony, even from those who are far away. He neither performs a good deed to show off, nor abandons it out of shyness. If he is publicly vindicated, he is anxious about what they are saying and asks Allah to forgive them on account of that which they do now know. The speech of one who does not know him does not deceive him, and he fears the consequences of his deeds.”  al-Kafi v.2, p.183, no.3; al-Kafi v.2, p.91, no.2

Imam Musa al-Kadhim [a], said in a long tradition to one of his companions: “O Hisham, Amir al-Mu’minin [a] used to say: “The servant of Allah does not possess anything better than the intellect, and the intellect of a man is complete only when he possess certain characteristics: that any disbelief and evil on its part should be rejected, whereas righteousness and goodness from it should be naturally expected. Any excessive wealth of his is spent, and any excess in his speech is curbed. His portion of this world is his nourishment. His time is never satiated when gaining knowledge. He would rather have degradation in the eyes of Allah than renown amongst the people. Humility is much dearer to him than honor. He regards the few good deeds of others to be much, and regards his own many good deeds to be few. He sees everybody as better than himself, and that he is the worst of them all with regard to his soul, and this is how it is. al-Kafi v.1, p.14

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “The believer has strength in his religion, resolution in spite of his flexibility, faith in his certainty, a great desire to understand, activity in his guidance, goodness in his uprightness, knowledge in his clemency, subtlety in his friendliness, openhandedness on the path of the truth, an aim in his wealth, tolerance in his poverty, a pardoning nature in spite of his power (to punish), obedience to Allah in his advice, termination of base desires, piety in his longing,  a yearning to fight in the way of Allah, prayer at times of business, patience in hardship, composure in times of agitation, endurance in adversity, thankfulness in times of comfort. He neither backbites nor boasts, and does not cut off relations with his blood relatives. He is not weak, nor rude, nor rough. His gaze does no precede him [i.e., he lowers it], nor does his stomach disgrace him, nor do his private parts have a hold on him. He is not jealous of people, and does not abuse them even though he may be abused, and he is not extravagant. He Helps the oppressed and has mercy on the destitute. His soul experiences difficulty because of him, while the people will experience comfort on account of him. He does not desire the glory of this world, nor is he seduced by its decadence. When people have a concern, they turn on him, and when he himself has a concern, it will occupy his own mind. There is no deficiency to be seen in his clemency, nor any feebleness in his opinion, nor any futility in his belief. He guides whoever consults him, helps whoever needs help, and he dreads and steers well away from obscenity and folly.” al-Kafi v.2, p.182, no. 4; Sifat al-Shi’ah p. 34, no. 54; al-Khisal p.571, no.2 (with additional phrase at the end “and this is the description of a believer”)

Imam ‘Ali Amir al-Mu’minin [a] asked the Prophet [saws] to describe a believer, at which the Prophet replied: “The believer has twenty qualities, which, if he lacks, he has not completed his faith. Indeed, the characteristics of believers, O ‘Ali, are that they attend to their daily prayers, hasten to give the alms tax (zakat), feed the destitute, stroke the head of the orphan [i.e., treat him with kindness and compassion], wear clean but simple clothes and cover their private parts properly with loincloths. They are such that when they relate an incident they will never lie, and if they gallop forth they will not lag behind, if they are entrusted with something they will never betray, and when they speak they are truthful. They are worshippers by night, lions by day. They fast during the day and pray through the night. They never trouble a neighbor, nor is a neighbor ever annoyed on account of them. They walk on the earth humbly, and their footprints lead to the houses of widows and funerals. May Allah make us and you among the pious people.” al-Kafi v.2, p.182, no. 5; Amali al-Saduq p.439, no.16 with additional qualities after the phrase “hasten to give zakat”: “they go for Hajj to Allah’s sacred House, and fast in the month of Ramadhan.”

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “The Shi’ah of ‘Ali were men of empty stomachs, faded and dry lips, people of knowledge and clemency, known for their worship, and they had been commanded to have the same piety and striving as you.” al-Kafi v.2, p.183

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said to one of his companions: “O Muhzim, our Shi’ah (follower) is the one whose voice does not surpass his hearing, and whose grudge does not extend to his hands. He does not praise anyone who publicly spreads things about us, nor does he sit with one who finds faults with us, nor bother to argue with one who hates us. When he meets a believer, he honors him, and when he meets an ignorant person, he steers well away from him. Our Shi’ah are such that they would not growl at anyone like a dog, nor be greedy for anything like a crow, nor ask an enemy of ours for anything, even if they were to die hungry…[till the end of a longer tradition].” al-Kafi v.2, p.186, no.27

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “The believer is gentle and does not act roughly, and if he is treated roughly, he is gentle in return. He does not act unjustly, though if he is treated unjustly, he forgives. He is not miserly towards anyone, but if he is treated with miserliness, he is patient.” al-Kafi v.2, p.184, no. 17

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “The believer is one whose earnings are decent, whose character is pleasant and whose conscience is true. He spends any excess in his wealth and curbs any excess in his speech. People feel secure and do not fear any evil from him, and he treats all people fairly.” al-Kafi v.2, p.184, no. 18

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir [a] narrated that Imam ‘Ali [a] said: “Our Shi’ah are those who are dedicated to each other thanks to our guardianship and rule over them, who love each other on account of their love for us, who visit each other in order to keep our teaching alive, who do not act unjustly when angered, and who do not act extravagantly when happy. They are a blessing for their neighbor, and peace for those with whomever they associate.” al-Kafi v.2, p.185, no. 24

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] quoted Imam ‘Ali [a] as having said: “People of faith have certain characteristics by which they are recognized: truthful speech, prompt return of property entrusted in their care, keeping promises, keeping up relations with blood relatives, having mercy on the weak, very little indulgence in sexual relationship with women or frequenting women, making great efforts to do good, neighborliness, openness of personality, seeking knowledge and whatever takes them closer to Allah. Indeed, the believer is such that his own soul is in turmoil because of the way he is, yet at the same time people are at ease because of him. When night falls, he lays his face on the ground and prostrates himself before Allah with the noble limbs of his body, whispering to the One who created him, pleasing with Him to save his neck [from the Fire]. Indeed, this is how they are!” al-Kafi v.2, p.187, no. 30; Sifat al-Shi’ah p.46, no. 66

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir [a] said that the Prophet [saws] was asked about the best servants (of Allah), to which he replied: “They are those who, when they do good, are happy; when they do anything bad, they ask for forgiveness; when they are given something, they are thankful; when they are afflicted, they  are patient; and when they are angered, they forgive.” al-Kafi v.2, p.188, no. 31

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said that Imam ‘Ali Zayn al-‘Abidin [a] used to say: “The sing of a Muslim’s having completed his faith is his refraining from speaking about that which does not concern him, the fact he rarely disputes about anything, his clemency, his patience and his good nature.” al-Kafi v.2, p.188, no. 34

Imam ‘Ali Zayn al-‘Abidin [a] said: “It is from the novel traits of a believer that he spends his wealth by standards of that which they do not have and spends it on his own opulence by standards of opulence itself [i.e., by that which he already possesses rather than that which he does not], and is fair towards people, and always greets them first with salamun ‘alaykum.” al-Kafi v.2, p.188, no. 36

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said that the Prophet [saws] said: “Shall I tell you who is most similar to me?” His companions replied: “Yes, O Prophet of Allah.” He said: “It is the one who is the most good-natured, and who is the most lenient, and the one who is the most kind to his relatives, and the one who is the most loving of his brothers in faith, and the one who is the most enduring adherent to the truth, and the one who swallows his anger the most, and the one who pardons most readily, and who is the fairest in dealing with people regardless of whether he is happy or angry.” al-Kafi v.2, p.188, no. 35

The Holy Prophet [saws] said: “The angel Gabriel [a] came to me and said: “O Prophet of Allah, indeed, Allah has sent me to you with a gift that no one before you have ever been given.” The Prophet asked: “What is it?” He said: “Patience, and something even better than that.” The Prophet asked: “And what may that be?” He replied: “Contentment, and something even better than that.” The Prophet asked: “And what is that?” To which he replied: “Satisfaction, and something even better than that.” The Prophet asked: “And what might that be?” He replied: “Asceticism (zuhd), and something else even better.” The Prophet asked: “And what is that?” He replied: “Sincerity, and something even better.” The Prophet asked: “And what is that?” He replied: “Conviction, and something even better.” The Prophet asked: “And what is that, O Gabriel?” To which he replied: “The forerunner to that is complete reliance on Allah, Mighty and Exalted.” So I, the Prophet [saws], asked: “And what is complete reliance on Allah?” He replied: “It is to know that a creature of Allah can neither harm nor benefit, nor give nor withhold. It is to remove any hopes one may have in mere creatures. If a servant is like this, who does not do anything for anyone apart from Allah, and he has neither hope nor fear anyone expect Allah, then this is complete reliance.” I said: “O Gabriel, what is the significance of patience? He replied: “It is to be patient in both good times as well as bad, in poverty as well as in wealth, in times of tribulation as well as in comfort. It is such that the servant does not complain of his situation or of any adversity that has befallen him to any other creature.” I asked: “Then what is the significance of contentment?” He replied: “It is to be contented with whatever is bestowed on him in the world, to be contented with the little he has and to be grateful for the simple things.” Then I asked: “What is the significance of satisfaction?” He replied: “The one who is satisfied does not resent his Master for what has befallen him (or not been bestowed on him) in this world, neither is he satisfied with himself for carrying out mere simple actions.” Then I asked: “O Gabriel, then what is the significance of asceticism?” To which he replied: “He loves whatever his Creator loves, and dislikes whatever his Creator dislikes; he refrains from even the lawful things (halal) in this world and does not even glance at the prohibited (haram) things, as he considers the lawful things to be accountable and the prohibited things as a punishment. He has mercy on all Muslims as well as on himself. He abstains from talking as one would abstain from a corpse whose stench was unbearably strong. He abstains from the vanities and adornment of this world just as if he were running away from the fire that was consuming them and reducing his hopes. He always has [awareness of] his death in front of him.” I asked: “O Gabriel, what is the significance of sincerity?” He replied: “The sincere person is one who does not ask anyone for anything until he finds it, and when he finds it himself, he is satisfied. If he has anything left over, he gives it away in the way of Allah. In refraining from asking creation, he has truly attested to the worship of Allah. And in his satisfaction at finding it, it is with Allah that he is satisfied, and Allah is please with him in turn. In his giving for the sake of Allah, it is as if he has trusted his Lord.” I asked: “What is the signification of conviction?” He replied: “The believer acts for Allah as if he sees Him, for even if he does not see Allah, Allah still sees him. And it is to know with full certainty that that which befalls him does not do so in order to make him fail, nor is his failure meant as a tribulation for him. These are all branches of complete reliance (of Allah) and forerunners to asceticism.”” Ma’ani al-Akhbar p. 260, no.1;

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Chapter 5: The Divine Recommendation to Ponder Over That Which Brings About Self-evaluation and Good Actions

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “The greatest worship of Abu Dharr (May Allah have mercy on Him) was his pondering and thinking.” al-Khisal p.42, no.33

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “The best of worship is habitually to ponder over Allah [sWT] and His Power.” al-Kafi v.2, p.45, no. 3

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said that Amir al-Mu’minin [a] used to say: “Remind your heart to think, and raise your body in the middle of night, and be careful of your duty to Allah, your Lord.” al-Kafi v.2, p.45, no. 1

Harun Rashid, the Abbasid Caliph, wrote to Imam Musa al-Kadhim [a] saying: “Exhort me with a lesson, but let it be short and concise”. So Imam [a] wrote back, saying: “Every single thing your eye sees contains a lesson.” Amali al-Saduq p.411, no.8

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] was asked by one of his companions as to significance of the following widely narrated phrase: “Pondering for an hour is better than a whole night’s worship”, and was asked how one should ponder. He replied: “One should pass by ruins or a castle and wonder: “Where are your inhabitants? Where are those who built you? Why do you not speak?” al-Kafi v.2, p.45, no. 2; Kitab al-Zuhd, p. 15, no.29, similar narration in al-Mahasin, v.26, no.5

Imam ‘Ali al-Rida [a] said: “True worship is not to pray and to fast excessively, rather it is to ponder over the authority of Allah, Mighty and Exalted.” al-Kafi v.2, p.45, no. 4

Imam ‘Ali al-Rida [a] said: “True worship is not to pray and to fast excessively, rather true worship is to ponder over Allah, The Most High.” al-Sara’ir, p.476

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Pondering leads to goodness and the performance of good.” al-Kafi v.2, p.45, no. 5

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Chapter 6: The Divine Recommendation to Adorn Oneself With Noble Moral Traits (With a Brief Mention of a Few of Them)

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Indeed, we love those who are intelligent, understanding, acute in their discernment, clement, amiable, patient, honest and loyal. Indeed Allah, Mighty and Exalted, distinguished the prophets with noble modal traits, so whoever possesses such traits should praise Allah for that. And he who does not possess any of them should implore and beseech Allah to bestow them upon him.” Upon hearing this, one of his companions asked him: “May I be your ransom, what are these traits?” He replied: “They are: piety, contentment, patience, thankfulness, clemency, modesty, generosity, courage, self-respect, righteousness, truthfulness and reliability” al-Kafi v.2, p.46, no. 3

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “I urge you to adopt noble moral traits, for indeed Allah [sWT] loves these traits and yourselves, and hates despicable deeds. I urge you also to recite the Qur’an…and I urge you to have a pleasant disposition, for it takes him who has it to the level of one who is praying and fasting. I urge you to be neighborly, for Allah, the Sublime, has commanded it. And I urge you to clean your teeth, as it is a cleanser as well as a good practice. I urge you to fulfil the duties that Allah has enjoyed upon you and avoid the things that Allah has prohibited.” Amali al-Saduq p. 294, no. 10

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Allah, Might and Exalted, created leaders from His creation and His earth in order to fulfil the needs of their brothers, and they consider generosity as tantamount to praising Allah. Allah, Glory be to Him, loves noble moral traits, such that he says to his Prophet [saws]: “And most surely you conform [yourself] to sublime morality” Q.68:4. Prophet said: “This [sublime morality] is generosity and good-naturedness.”” Amali al-Tusi, v.1, p.308

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said to one of his companions: “Indeed, let me tell you about noble moral traits – disregarding people’s faults, giving generously to one’s brother from one’s own wealth and remembering Allah much.” Ma’ni al-Akhbar, p.191, no.2

The Holy Prophet [saws] asked: “Shall I inform you who are the best of your men?” His companions replied: “Yes, O Prophet of Allah.” He said: “The best of you are those who are pious, pure, openhandedly generous, of pure descent of both sides of the family, good to their parents, and who take care of their dependents themselves, without putting the responsibility on to others.” al-Kafi v.2, p.47, no. 7

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Indeed, Allah, Mighty and Exalted, has chosen for you Islam as a path, so be good company for it by being generous and good-natured.” al-Kafi v.2, p.46, no.4

A man from Bani Hashim said: “There are four things, which if a person possesses them, will complete his Islam, and even if he were to have other flaws from head to toe, they will not decrease it. They are: honesty, modesty, good-naturedness and thankfulness.” al-Kafi v.2, p.47, no.6

A man came to Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] and asked him: “O son of the Prophet, tell me about noble moral traits.” Imam replied: “It is to pardon one who is unjust to you, to reconcile with one who has cut you off, to give to one who has deprived you, and to tell truth, even if it be to your detriment.” Amali al-Saduq p. 231, no. 10; Ma’ni al-Akhbar, p.191, no.1

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Chapter 7: The Divine Obligation to Have Conviction in Allah in His Provision of Sustenance and Lifespan, and in Benefit and Harm

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said that Amir al-Mu’minin [a] used to say: “A servant will never experience faith until he knows that that which befalls him does not do so in order to make him fail, nor is his failure meant as a tribulation for him, and that the one who causes benefit and harm 1 is Allah, Mighty and Exalted.” al-Kafi, v.2, p.48, no.7 and al-Kafi, v.2, p.48, no.4

1. And if Allah should afflict you with harm (adversity), then there is none to remove it but He; and if He intends good to you there is none to repel His grace; He brings it to whom He pleases of His servants; and He is the Forgiving, the Merciful.” Q.10:107

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Safwan al-Jamal says that he asked Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] about the significance of Allah’s statement in the Qur’an: “And as for the wall, it belonged to two orphan boys in the city, and there was beneath it a treasure belonging to them.Q.18:82; He replied: “It [the treasure] was neither gold nor silver, but four phrases: “There is no god but Allah”; “One who is convinced of death will not laugh”; The heart of one who is convinced of the reckoning will not be joyful”; and “The one who is convinced of Divine Decree will not fear anyone but Allah.” al-Kafi, v.2, p.48, no.6

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] narrated that, “’Amir al-Mu’minin [a] was sitting under a wall that was tilting forward, settling matters between people, when one of them said: “Don’t sit under this wall for it is dangerous”, to which Imam ‘Ali [a] replied: “Are you trying to protect a man from his destined end?” As soon as Imam got up, the wall fell down. ’Amir al-Mu’minin [a] and others like him used to be like this, and this is conviction.” al-Kafi, v.2, p.48, no.5

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Every single thing has a limit”, upon which one of his companions asked: “May I be your ransom, what is the limit of reliance on Allah?” Imam replies: “Conviction”. He asked: “And the limit of conviction?” He said: “To fear no one besides Allah.” al-Kafi, v.2, p.47, no.1

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “The soundness of a Muslim man’s conviction is that he does not go out to please people by displeasing Allah, and does not reproach them for what Allah did not grant him, for sustenance is not dispatched as a result of the desire of covetous one, nor is it repelled by the aversion of grudging one. If one were to flee from his sustenance as one flees death, his sustenance would find him just as death does. Verily, Allah, by virtue of His Justice and Equity, placed ease and comfort in conviction and contentment and placed anxiety and distress in doubt and discontentment .” al-Kafi, v.2, p.47, no.2

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Consistent action upon one’s conviction, though it be little, is better with Allah than action without conviction, though it be much.” al-Kafi, v.2, p.47, no.1; ‘Ilal al-Shara’I, p.559, no.1

Sa’id b. Qays al-Hamadani narrated that, “One day in the midst of a battle, the sight of a man wearing only two garments [i.e., without armour] caught my attention, so I galloped towards him, and it was none other than Amir al-Mu’minin [a], so I said: “O Amir al-Mu’minin, in such a place [i.e., you are not wearing armor]?” So he replied: “Yes, O Sa’id b. Qays, every single servant is granted a protector and a guardian by Allah – two angles who are with him, protecting him from falling from the top of a mountain or falling into a well, and the like, but when Allah decrees something, there is nothing between him and it that can stop it from coming down.”” al-Kafi, v.2, p.48, no.8

Imam ‘Ali al-Rida [a] one day (when talking about how sustenance is pre-ordained and apportioned) was asked: “How can you say such a thing, when people toil so hard to earn their sustenance?” He replied: “Allah has valley of gold, which he protects with the weakest of his creatures, the ant, and even if the most fortunate person were to covet it, he would not be able to reach it.” al-Kafi, v.2, p.49, no.11

Imam ‘Ali Amir al-Mu’minin [a] has said: “The fixed and destined time of death [of a man] is a good enough guardian [for him].” Nahj al-Balagha, v.3, p.226, no.306;

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Chapter 8: The Divine Obligation to Act According to the Intellect and to Counter Ignorance

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “When Allah created the intellect, He gave it the faculty of reason and then commanded it, “Come forward”, so it came forward, then commanded it, “Go back”, and it went back. The He said to it: “By my Honor and Sublimity, I have not created anything as dear to Me as you, and I have bestowed you only upon one who I love. It is you that I command, and you that I prohibit from things, and you that I punish and you that I reward.” al-Kafi, v.1, p.8, no.1; al-Mahasin, p.192, no.6, similar al-Mahasin, p.192, no.7,

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] was asked by someone what the intellect was, to which Imam replied: “It is that with which a servant worship the Beneficent and that with which he attains Paradise.” So the man asked: “So what about that which even Mu’awiyah possessed?” Imam replied: “That is a vicious thing, that is devilry, and resembles intellect, though it is not so.” al-Kafi, v.1, p.8, no.3; al-Mahasin, p.195, no.15

Imam Musa al-Kadhim [a] said to one of his companions, Hisham b. al-Hakam: “O Hisham, indeed Allah has given glad tidings to the people of intellect and understand in the Qur’an, saying: “Therefore give good news to My servants, Who listen to speech and follow the best of it. Those are the ones Allah has guided, and those are people of understanding.Q.39:17-18. Then he said: “O Hisham, verily Luqman said to his son: “Humble yourself to the truth and you will be the most intelligent of men. My son, this world is a deep sea in which many a scholar may drown, so let piety be your boat, and faith your provision, and reliance on Allah your sails, and intellect your captain, and knowledge your steer, and patience your shipmates.” 

O Hisham, every single thing has an authority, and the authority of the intellect is thinking and the authority of thought is silence. Everything has a riding beast [tool] at its disposal, and for the intellect it is humility, and you would have to be a fool to mount a prohibited and unstable beast.

O Hisham, verily Allah has two authorities over His creation, one manifest and the other hidden. The manifest authority is the prophets, messengers and divine guides, whereas the hidden authority is the intellect.

O Hisham, how can you expect your actions to be purified by Allah when your heart is preoccupied with matters other than the command of your Lord, and you obey your whims in spite of your intellect?

O Hisham, the intelligent person contents himself with a meagre portion of this world along with wisdom, and does not content himself with a meagre portion of wisdom along with this world. This is why their business flourish. The intelligent people have abandoned the extravagances of the world, so how they can sin?; for abandoning this world is a virtue, and abandoning sin is a duty.

O Hisham, the intelligent man looks at this world and at its people, and he knows that this world is acquired only by toil. And he looks at the Hereafter, and he knows that it too is acquired only by toil, so by means of toiling, he acquires the more permanent of the two.” al-Kafi, v.1, p.10, no.12

Imam ‘Ali Amir al-Mu’minin [a] has said: “The angel Gabriel [a] descended upon Adam [a] and said to him: “O Adam, I have been commanded to give you a choice of three things, of which you must choose one and leave the other two.” Adam replied: “O Gabriel, what are these three things? He said: “Intellect, Modesty and Belief.” So Adam said: “I choose Intellect.” Then Gabriel told Modesty and Belief to leave. However, they beseeched him and said: “O Gabriel, we have been commanded to be wherever the Intellect is.” So he replied: “As you wish”, and ascended back from whence he had come.” al-Kafi, v.1, p.8, no.2; al-Mahasin, p.191, no.2; al-Faqih, v.4, p.298, no.902

Imam ‘Ali al-Rida [a] said: “Every man’s friend is his intellect, and his enemy is ignorance.”  al-Kafi, v.1,p.8, no.4; al-Mahasin,  p.194, no.12; ‘Ilal al-Shara’i p.101, no.2; ‘Uyun Akhbar al-Rida,  v.2,p.24, no.1 and  v.1,p.258, no.15

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Whoever uses his intellect will have belief, and whoever has belief will enter to Paradise.” al-Kafi, v.1,p.9, no.6; Thawab al-A’mal, p.29, no.2

Amir al-Mu’minin [a] said: “The intellect is a chaste covering, and virtue is a manifest beauty, so cover the flaws of your character with your virtue, and kill your desires with your intellect – compassion will submit to you, and love will manifest itself to you.” al-Kafi, v.1, p.15, no.13

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “The intellect is the authority of the believer.” al-Kafi, v.1, p.19, no.24

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] quoted the Prophet [saws] as having said: “O ‘Ali, there is no poverty worse than ignorance, and no wealth more profitable than the intellect.” al-Kafi, v.1, p.20, no.25

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “There are five things that if a person lacks, he will also lack in enjoyment [of anything]. They are: the intellect, good manners, belief, generosity, and a good nature.”  al-Mahasin, p.191, no.1

The author says: “The word “intellect”, in the terminology of scholars and wise men, has been used to mean various things. Through the course of research, we know that, in traditions, it has been ascribed three meanings:

First: The faculty enabling one to tell right from wrong, and to distinguish them, and the knowledge of the cause of things. This is what has been charged with religious obligations.

Second: The state and disposition that incites one to choose good and advantageous things, and to about evil and harm.

Third: Intelligence, i.e., knowledge. This is why its opposite has been referred to as ignorance, and not folly or madness.

The intellect to which is referred is most of the traditions in this chapter and others refers to the second and third meanings, and Allah is the Most Knowledgeable. 

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Chapter 9: The Divine Obligation on the Intellect to Conquer Carnal Desires, and the Divine Prohibition from Doing the Opposite

Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq [a] quoted his infallible forefathers as having narrated on the authority of Prophet [saws] that He said: “One who, when an evil thought or carnal desires comes to him, shuns it because of his fear of Allah, Mighty and Exalted. Allah will forbid the Fire from touching him, and will protect him from the Great Terror, and will bestow on him what He has promised him in His book: “And for him who fears to stand before his Lords are two gardens.Q.55:46. As for one who, when this base world and the Hereafter both occur to him, chooses this world over the next, he will meet Allah on the Day of Judgement without any good deed to protect him from the Fire. And he who chooses the Hereafter and abandons this world, Allah will be please with him, and will forgive him according to his deeds.” al-Faqih, v.4, p.2, no.1

One of Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq’s [a] companions, ‘Abdallah b. Sanan once asked him: “Are the angels better or are humans better? To which he replied: “Amir al-Mu’minin, ‘Ali b. Abi Talib [a] said: “Allah endowed angels with intellect without desire, animals with desire without intellect, and man with both of them. So he whose intellect manages to conquer his desires is better than the angels, and he whose desire overcome his intellect is worse than the animals.” ‘Ilal al-Shara’I, p.4, no.1;

Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq [a] narrated on the authority of his infallible forefathers that the Prophet [saws] said: “Blessings upon the one who abandons his desires for the sake of a promised place that he has not even seen.” Thawab al-A’mal, p.211, no.1

Imam ‘Ali Amir al-Mu’minin [a] said: “How many a fleeting desire that lasts but an hour brings about enduring sorrow.” Nahj al-Balaghah

Imam ‘Ali Amir al-Mu’minin [a] said: “How many an indulgent meal prevents several meals.” Nahj al-Balaghah v.3, p.193, no.171

Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Allah Almighty has said: “The one whose prayer (salat) is most readily accepted is the one who abases himself to My Greatness, holds himself back from his desires for My sake, passes his day in My remembrance, does not behave haughtily over My creatures, feeds the hungry, clothes the naked, has mercy on the afflicted, and gives refuge to the traveller who is away from his home, as all this makes his light shine forth, and like the sun I create a light for him in the darkness and a clemency for him in times of ignorance, I protect him with my Might and My angels guard him. When he calls Me I answer him, and when he ask Me I give to him, for all that I have in my possession is like the Gardens of Perpetuity whose fruits are always within reach 1, and remain eternally fresh.”” al-Mahasin, p.15, no.44

1. This refers to the Qur’anic verse: “The fruits of which are near at handQ.69:23 and corresponds with the humility of a believer.

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Chapter 10: The Divine Obligation to Resort to Allah

Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Whoever from among the servants of Allah devotes himself towards that which Allah loves, Allah too devotes Himself to that which he loves. And whoever resorts entirely to Allah, Allah protects him, and whoever turns toward Allah, Allah accepts him and protects him, such that whether the sky was falling upon the earth, or calamity was to befall all the inhabitants of the earth, he would be in the Party of Allah, secure from all calamities. Indeed, does not Allah say: “Surely those who guard against evil are in a secure place.Q:44:51?”” al-Kafi, v.2, p.53, no.4

Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Allah [swt] revealed to Dawud [a]: “When one of my servants resorts to me and not to any of My creation, I know that from his inner intention, such that even if the skies and the earth and their inhabitants were to conspire against him, I will make an outlet for him in spite of them. And when one of My servants resorts to one of my creatures, I know that too from his intention, such that I cut off the means of subsistence of the skies from him, and I will make the earth disintegrate from under him, and do not care in which valley he perishes.”” al-Kafi, v.2, p.52, no.1

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Chapter 11: The Divine Obligation to Rely Entirely on Allah and to Entrust All Matters to Him

Imam ‘Ali Amir al-Mu’minin [a] was asked about Allah’s statement in Qur’an: “And whoever trusts in Allah, He is sufficient for him,Q.65:3 regarding which he said: “Trusting in Allah has various stages, requiring that you have complete trust in Allah with respect to all your affairs, such that whatever He does with you, you are contented, knowing that He will only do what is best and beneficial for you, and knowing that it is by His decree. So rely upon Allah, entrust it to Him and trust Him with regard to all your affairs.” al-Kafi, v.2, p.53, no.5

Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Whoever has been given three things will not be deprived of three others [i.e, they will accompany automatically]: Whoever has been given Supplication has been given the Answer. Whoever has been given Gratitude has been given Abundance. Whoever has been given Trust has been given Sufficiency. I urge you to recite the Book of Allah, Mighty and Exalted: “And whoever trusts in Allah, He is sufficient on himQ.65:3; and “If you are grateful, I will certainly give you moreQ.14:7; and “Call me, I will answer you.Q.40:60al-Kafi, v.2, p.53, no.6; al-Mahasin, p.3, no.1

Imam ‘Ali Zayn al-‘Abidin [a] said: “I went out one day, and arrived at a wall, against which I leaned, when suddenly I saw a man wearing two white garments looking at me. Then he said: “O ‘Ali b. al-Husayn [a], why is it that I see you melancholy and sad? O ‘Ali b. al-Husayn, have you ever seen anyone call Allah and not be answered?” I replied: “No.” He continued: “Then have you seen anyone relying on Allah and not sufficed by Him? I replied: “No.” Then he said: “Have you seen anyone ask Allah and not be given by Him?” I said: “No.” Then he disappeared.” al-Kafi, v.2, p.52, no.2

Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq [a] said: “Verily, wealth and honour roam around freely from place to place, so if they happen to come upon a place where reliance on Allah resides, they settle there permanently.” al-Kafi, v.2, p.53, no.3

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Chapter 12: The Impermissibility of Attaching One’s Hopes and Expectations to Anyone Other Than Allah

Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq [a] narrated from one of his books: “Indeed Allah, Blessed and Almighty, says: “By My Honour and Sublimity, and by My Glory and Elevation upon my Throne, verily I cut off the hopes of anyone who, in despair, hopes from anyone other than Me, and clothe him with the garb of disgrace amongst people, and remove him from My proximity, and distance him from My Grace. How can he place his hope in someone else during hardships when those very hardships are in my My Grasp? And how does he dare to entertain expectations of someone else, knocking at someone else’s door with his whims while the very keys to these locked doors are in My Hand, and while My door is open to anyone who calls Me? Is there anybody whom I have ever disappointed, when, in a calamity, he has placed his hope in Me? And is there anybody whose expectations I have cut off when he has expected something from me? I guard the hopes of my servants, but they are not satisfied with My Guardianship. I have filled the skies with beings that do not tire of glorifying Me, and have commanded them not to shut the doors of communication between Me and My servants, but they [the servants] do not have trust in My Word. Does the one afflicted with one of My tribulations not know that no one can remove it without My Permission apart from Me? So why is it that I see him oblivious of Me, when I have given him of My Generosity that which he has not even asked Me? And I have removed from him that which he has not even thought to ask Me to repel from him, asking others instead. Have you not seen how I am the One to give first, before I have even been asked? Then at last I am asked, to regard Me as such? Am I not the One who possess generosity and kindness? Are pardon and mercy not in My grasp? Am I not the destination of all hope, for who is there who can cut them save Me? Do the expectant ones not fear lest they place their hope in other than Me? If all the inhabitants of the skies and the earth were to have high hopes, and I fulfilled all their hopes, there would not be an atom’s weight of decrease in My kingdom, for how can such a kingdom diminish when I am its evaluator? How wretched are those who despair of My mercy, and how wretched those who disobey Me and do not fear Me.””, al-Kafi v.2, p.53, no 7 and v.2, p.54, no.8

When interpreting the Qur’anic verse, “And most of them do not believe in Allah without associating others with him”.Q.12:106 Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq [a] said: “This is in reference to man’s statement: “Were it not for “x” I would surely have perished” or “Were it not for “x” I would indeed have been afflicted” or “Were it not for “x” my family would be at a loss.” Do you not see that he has associated a partner to Allah in his Kingdom giving him sustenance and repelling misfortune from him?” He was subsequently asked: “Then what should one say?” He [a] replied: “One should say”: “Were it not for Allah granting me x’s help, I would have perished…” There is nothing wrong with saying things like this.” ‘Uddat al-Da’I, p.89

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Chapter 13: The Divine Obligation to Combine in Oneself Both Fear and Hope in Allah, and to act Accordingly

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] when asked by one of his companions what comprised Luqman's advice to his son, said: "It contained wondrous things, the most remarkable of which was when he said to his son: "Fear Allah in such a way that you think that if you were to come to Him with all the good deeds of men and jinn, He would still punish you, and have hope in Him such that you think that if you were to come to Him with the sins of all men and jinn, He would have mercy on you." Then Imam said: "My father used to say: "Every believing servant has two rays in his heart: a ray of fear and a ray of hope. If they were to be weighed up against each other, they would not exceed each other.""  al-Kafi, v.2, p.55, no.1; also Luqman part is in Amali al-Saduq, p.531, no.5
 
Someone came to Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] and told him that there was a group of people who were disobeying Allah, but at the same time they were saying that they hoped [in His Mercy], and remained thus until death overtook them. Imam [a] said:"These are people who swing back and forth between their desires. They are lying and are not really hopeful, for the one who hope something seeks it, and the one who fear something flees from it." al-Kafi, v.2, p.55, no.5
 
A similar tradition on the authority of Imam al-Sadiq [a] also includes: "and they are not people who incline towards us."  al-Kafi, v.2, p.56, no.6
 
Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a]: "A believer is not a believer until and unless he is both fearful and hopeful, and he is not fearful and hopeful until and unless he acts in accordance with what which he fears and hopes." al-Kafi, v.2, p.57, no.11
 
Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: "Have hope in Allah in such a way that it does not embolden you to disobey Him, and fear him in such a way that it does not cause you to despair of His Mercy." Amali al-Saduq, p.22, no.5
 
Amir al-Mu'minin, in one of his sermons, said: "He claims according to his own thinking that he hopes from Allah. By the Great One, he lies. Why then is his hope not manifest in his action, whereas the expectations of all those who hope are know through their actions? Every hope manifests itself thus, expect an impure hope in Allah; and every fear establish itself (in action), except the unrealistic fear in Allah. He claims to have great expectations of Allah, and small hopes from men, and yet he gives men such a consideration as he does not give to His Lord. And what is wrong with Allah, exalted be His Praise, that he should give Him less importance than that which he gives to His creatures?. Is it that you fear being proved wrong or disappointed by placing your hope in Him? Or is it that you do not consider Him a place fit for your hope? Similarly, when a man fears another, he hives him such consideration out of his fear that he does not give to Allah. Thus, he has made his fear for men ready money, whereas his fear of the Creator is like a mere uncollectable debt!" Nahj al-Balaghah, v.2, sermon 160

 

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On 5/15/2015 at 11:38 PM, dragonfly said:

MashaAllah brother thank you. Is this book available to be read anywhere else online? I couldn't find it.

Salaam Aleikum,

I have not found the full version of the book, but only part of it can be read in online. Insha'Allah i will soon continue add more chapters. I have been lately been busy with the exams.

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Chapter 14: The Divine Obligation to Fear Allah

1) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'One of the preserved portions from the sermons of the Prophet (S) is as follows. He said: "O people, verily you posses certain characteristics, so be aware of these characteristics and act upon them, verily you have a destined end, so be aware of it and act accordingly. Indeed, the believer in one who acts between two fears: between the time that has passed, not knowing what Allah has done with it, and the appointed time that is to come, not knowing what Allah has decreed therein. The believing servant should take the best from his inner self, for himself, and form this world for the next, and in his youth before his old age, and in his lifetime before his death. By the One in whose Hand is  the soul of Muhammad, there is no turning back after this world, and no abode after it except Paradise or Hell." [al-Kafi, v.2, p.57, no.9]

2) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'Verily, the believer should always be between two states of fear: fear of what Allah might do with respect to a past sin, and fear of what losses he will incur in what is left of his life. Every morning he awakens fearful, and nothing can settle him apart from fear.' [al-Kafi, v.2, p.57, no.12]

3) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as), with regard to Allah's statement in the Qur'an, "And for him who fears to stand before his Lord are two gardens", said: 'Whoever knows that Allah hears and sees everything that he says, and knows every single good or bad deed he performs, this should prevent him from evil deeds, and that is the one who fears to stand before his Lord, and prohibits the soul from desires.' [al-Kafi, v.2, p.65, no.1] [Qur'an 55:46]

4) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'Whoever fears Allah, Allah makes him feared by everything else, and whoever does not fear Allah, Allah makes him fearful of everything else.' [al-Kafi, v.2, p.55, no.3; al-Faqih, v.4, p.258, no.824]

5) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as), when narrating about the Prophet (S)'s advice to Imam Ali Úáíå ÇáÓáÇã also added: 'O Ali, there are three things that will deliver a person: fear of Allah both publicly and privately, aspiration to Him in times of both wealth and poverty, and just and fair speech in both happiness and anger.' [al-Faqih, v.4, p.260, p. 824]

6) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as), addressing one of his companions, said: 'O Ishaq, fear Allah as if you see Him even if you do not see Him, for certainly He sees you, for if you behave as if He does not see you, then indeed you have disbelieved. And if you do not know that He sees you and yet you flagrantly disobey Him, then you have rendered Him the most insignificant of all those who see you.' [al-Kafi, v.2, p.55, no.2]

7) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'Whoever know Allah fears Him, and whoever fears Him curbs himself from this world.' [al-Kafi, v.2, p.55, no. 4]

8) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'Intense fear of Allah, Mighty and Exalted, is a part of worship, for Allah says in the Qur'an: "Those of His servants who possess knowledge truly fear Allah"; and "therefore, fear not the people, and fear Me"; and "And for those who fear Allah, He prepares a way out". The love of honor and reputation [in the eyes of people] is not present in the heart of a person who fears and is in awe of Allah.' [al-Kafi, v.2, p.56, no.7; Qur'an 35:28; 5:44; 65:2]

9) Imam Muhammad al-Baqir(as) said: 'One of the Prophet (S)'s sayings is: "The peak of wisdom is fear of Allah, Mighty and Exalted."' [al-Faqih, v.4, p.271, no.828]

Chapter 15: The Divine Recommendation to Cry Much from Fear of Allah

1) The Holy Prophet (S), in a tradition listing forbidden acts, said: 'Anyone whose eyes shed tears on account of his fear of Allah, he shall have a palace in Paradise adorned with pearls and jewels for each tear that he sheds, the like of which no eye will have ever seen, no ear will have ever heard, and no human mind will ever have conceived.' [al-Faqih, v.4, p.10, no.1; 'Iqab al-A'mal, p.344.]

2) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'One of the exhortations with which Allah addressed the Prophet 'Isa(as), was: "O 'Isa, I am your Lord and the Lord of your forefathers!... O 'Isa, son of the pure virgin, cry for yourself with the weeping of one who has bidden farewell to his family, who loathes this world, leaving it to those worthy of it, and whose sole desire is that which is with Allah."' [Amali al-Saduq, p. 416, no.1]

3) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'Prophet Nuh's name used to be 'Abd al-Ghaffar, but he was called Nuh because he used to lament over himself.' ['Ilal al-Shara'i, p.28, no.1]

4) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'Prophet Nuh's name used to be 'Abd al-Malik, but he was called Nuh because he wept for five hundred years.' ['Ilal al-Shara'i, p.28, no.2]

5) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'Prophet Nuh's name used to be 'Abd al-A'la, but he was called Nuh because he wept for five hundred years.' ['Ilal al-Shara'i, p.28, no.3]

[shayk al-Sadduq, the author of 'Ilal al-Shara'i', said that these three traditions are all congruous for they all ascribe to him 'servanthood' ('Abd) of Allah, in "Abd al-Ghaffar, 'Abd al-Malik and 'Abd al-A'la.]

6) Imam Muhammad al-Baqir(as) narrated that the Prophet (S) said: 'Every thing can be equated to something else, except Allah, for nothing can be equivalent to Him, and the phrase "There is no God but Allah" for nothing can be equivalent to that , and a tear on account of fear of Allah, which is immeasurable, and if it flows on to the fearful servant's face, neither miserliness nor humiliation will ever overcome him thereafter.' [Thawab al-'Amal, p.17, no.6]

7) Imam Muhammad al-Baqir(as) narrated that the Prophet (S) has said: 'Blessings be on the person whom Allah sees crying on account of his awe of Allah, for a sin that nobody saw him commit.' [Thawab al-'Amal, p.200, no.2 and p.211, no.2]

8) Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (s) narrated that the Prophet (S) has said: 'Every eye will be weeping on the Day of Judgement apart from three: the eye that used to cry on account of fear of Allah, the eye that closed so as not to look at what Allah has forbidden, and the eye that used to remain awake for the sake of Allah.' [Thawab al-'Amal, p.211, no.1]

9) Imam 'Ali al-Rida(as) said: 'One of the things that Allah told Prophet Musa(as) was: "The best thing that servants can do who wish to get closer to Me is to cry in awe of Me; the best deed that the worshipers can do as worship is to keep away from that which I have forbidden; the best thing the servants can do who wish to adorn themselves for Me is to abstain from those things that will make them self-sufficient in this world." At this, Musa(as) asked: "O Most Kind of all kind beings, what will their rewards for this be?" He replied: "O Musa, as for those wishing to get closer to me by crying in awe of me, they will be on the highest level, not shared by anyone else. As for the worshipers who worship Me by keeping away from what I have forbidden, I will inspect the deeds of others, but not their deeds, as a result of shyness from them. The ones who adorn themselves for me through asceticism on this world, I will give them full control of the whole Paradise, to settle wherever they may please."' [Thawab al-'Amal, p.211, no.1]

10) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'Verily the distance between the average man and Paradise is as much as the distance between the ground and the Throne [of Allah], as a result of the abundance of his sins. The only thing he can do is to cry on account of his fear of Allah, Mighty and Exalted, regretting having committed them so that the distance between himself and Paradise may be reduced to the distance between his eyelid and eyeball.' [uyun Akhbar al Rida (as), v.2, p.3, no.4]

11) Imam Ja-far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'Every single thing has a weight and a worth, except for tears, for one drop can put out seas of fire. Therefore, if one's eye wells up with tears, he will never be afflicted with miserliness or humiliation, and if the tears actually fall on to the face, Allah forbids the Fire from touching such a face, and if such a sincere weeper were to cry for a whole nation, they would be dealt with mercifully.' [al-Kafi, v.2, p.349, no.1; al-Kafi, v.2, p.350, no.5; al-Faqih, v.1, p.208, no.942; Thawab al-A'mal, p.200, no.1.]

12) There is another tradition on the authority of Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) that narrates similarly, with the following addition preceding it: 'There is no eye that will not be crying on the Day of Judgement, except for the eye that cried from fear of Allah, and every single eye that wells up with tears on account of awe of Allah, Allah will forbid the Fire from touching the rest of that person't body.' [al-Kafi, v.2, p.349, no.2]

13) Imam Muhammad al-Baqir(as) said: 'There is no drop more loved by Allah than a teardrop that falls in the dark of the night from fear of Allah, meant solely for Him and no one else.' [al-Kafi, v.2, p.349, no.3; al-Zuhd, p.72, no.203]

14) Imam Ja-far al-Sadiq(as) said: 'Every eye will be crying on the Day of Judgement, except three: the eye that closed when faced with that which Allah has forbidden, the eye that remained awake in obedience to Allah, and the eye that used to cry in the middle of the night from fear of Allah.' [al-Kafi, v.2, p.350, no.4; al-Zuhd, p.77, no.206]

15) Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq(as) said that Allah revealed to Prophet Musa(as) that: 'There are three things that I love most through which My servants can attain proximity to Me.' Musa asked: 'O my Lord, and what are they?' He replied: 'O Musa, they are: asceticism in this world, keeping away from acts that lead to My displeasure, and crying in are of Me.' Musa then asked: 'O my Lord, and what is their reward for doing thus?' Allah revealed: 'O Musa, those who practiced asceticism in this world will get Paradise, those who cried in awe of Me will be on the highest level, not shared by anyone else, and as for those who kept away from that which I have forbidden, I will inspect people's deeds but will not inspect theirs.' [al-Kafi, v.2, p.350, no.6; al-Zuhd, p.77, no.207]

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Chapter 16: The Divine Obligation to Have a Good Opinion of Allah, and the Divine Prohibition to Have a Bad Opinion of Him
 
Imam 'Ali al-Rida [as] said: "Have a good opinion of Allah, for Allah [swt] has said: ' I am according to My servant's opinion of Me -- if good, then good, and if bad, then bad.' " al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 58, no. 3.
 
Imam 'Ali al-Rida [as] said: 'Have a good opinion of Allah, for Aba 'Abdillah [i.e., Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as)] used to say: "One who has a good opinion of Allah, Allah is according to his opinion of Him, and whoever is pleased with small amount of sustenance that he has, Allah will accept even the little that he may do."' al-Kafi, v. 9, p. 346, no. 546.
 
Imam Muhammad al-Baqir [as] said: 'In the book of Imam 'Ali [as] we found part of the following sermon by Prophet [saws], that he delivered from the pulpit: "By the One god than whom there is no other, a believer has never been granted good in this world or the Hereafter expect as a result of his good opinion of Allah [swt], his hope in Allah, his good-naturedness, and his abstention from backbiting believers. And by the One god than whom there is no other, Allah does not punish a believer after his repentance and seeking of forgiveness, unless as a result of his bad opinion of Allah, his giving up hope in Him, his ill-naturedness and his backbiting fellow believers. And by the One god than whom there is no other, Allah is according to the good opinion of a believer, for Allah, Who is so kind and in Whose Hand is only good, cannot bring Himself to disprove the good opinion and high hopes that the believer has in Him. So have good opinion of Allah and place your desire in Him."' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 58, no. 2.
 
Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [as] said: "To have a good opinion of Allah [swt] means to place one's hopes only in Allah, and to fear only His displeasure." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 58, no. 4.
 
Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [as] said: "The believer must fear Allah with the fear of one who is on the brink of Hell, and must have such in him as if he is destined to go to Paradise. Verily, Allah, Blessed and Most High, is as the opinion that His servant has on him -- if good, then good, and if bad, then bad." al-Kafi, v. 8, p. 302, no. 462.
 
In his will to Muhammad b. Hanafiyyah, Imam 'Ali Amir al-Mu'minin [as] said: "Do not let yourself be overcome by a bad opinion of Allah, Mighty and Exalted, for it will not leave any bond between you and your friend [Allah]." al-Faqih, v. 4, p. 276, no. 830.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [as] said: ' When the last servant is ordered to be taken to Hell, he will keep looking back, so Allah will say: "Bring Him here." When he is brought forth, Allah will ask him: "My servant, why did you look back?" He will reply: "O my Lord, this is not how I imagined You to be." So Allah will ask: "My servant, how did you imagine Me to be?" To which he will reply: "O my Lord, I had the opinion that you would forgive me my faults and make me enter the Paradise." Then Allah, Mighty and Sublime, will say: "My angels, by My Might, and My Honor, and My Loftiness, and My High Position, he never had such a good opinion of Me for even an hour of his life, and if he had had such a good opinion of He for even an hour during his lifetime, I would not have terrorized him with the Fire. Justify his lie, and let him enter Paradise." Then Imam al-Sadiq [as] continued: 'No sooner does a servant have a good opinion of Allah than Allah is according to his good opinion of Him, and no sooner does he have a bad opinion oh Him than He is as that bad opinion. This is the purport of Allah's statement in the Qur'an 41:23: " And that was your assumption which you assumed about your Lord. It has brought you to ruin, and you have become among the losers." Thawab al-A'mal, p. 206, no. 1; al-Mahasin, p. 25, no. 3.

Imam 'Ali al-Rida [as] said: ' Have a good opinion of Allah, for Allah, Mighty and Exalted, has said: "I am according to My servant's opinion of Me, so he should only entertain a good opinion of Me." 'Uyun Akhbar al-Rida, v. 2, p. 18, no. 44

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [as] said: 'The servant who has wronged himself will be brought forth on the Day of Judgement, and Allah will ask: "Did I not command you to obey Me and did I not forbid you to disobey Me?" And he will reply: "You did, my Lord, but I was overcome by my base desires, and if you punish me it is truly as a result of my own sin, and You would never wrong me." Then Allah will order for him to be taken to the Fire, upon which he will say: "This is not how I imagined You would be", and Allah will ask him: "What was your opinion of Me?" and he will reply: "I had the best opinion of You", so Allah will order him to be taken to Paradise, and will say: "Your good opinion was of use to you at the last moment." ' al-Mahasin, p. 25, no.4

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Chapter 17: The Divine Recommendation to Reproach the Self, Discipline it and Despise it

Imam 'Ali al-Rida [as] said: 'A man from Bani Isra'il worshipped Allah for forty years, and one day made an offering to Allah, which was not accepted from him. So he said to his self: "You are the sole reason that my offering has not been accepted, and the sin is nobody's but yours." So Allah revealed to him: "Your reproach of your self is better than your worship of forty years."' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 59, no. 3

Amir al-Mu'minin [as] said: "O slaves of your desires! Cut them short [the desires], for he who stalls and halts at this world gets nothing out of it except the screech of the grinding teeth of its events [i.e., mere irritation from pointless prattle]. O people! Take charge of disciplining your souls and turn them away from their ravenous and base natures." Nahj al-Balaghah, v. 3, p. 238, no. 259

The Holy Prophet [saws] said: "One who despises himself over others will be protected by Allah from the terror of the Day of Judgement." Thawab al-A'mal, p.216, no. 1; al-Khisal, p. 15, no. 53

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Chapter 18: The Divine Obligation to Obey Allah [swt]

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir [as] said: "Do not allow different sects and opinions to drive you away [from the truth], for by Allah our true Shi'ah are none other than those who obey Allah, Mighty and Exalted." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 59, no. 1

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir [as] narrated that the Prophet said: "What is with Allah [of the unseen] can be attained only through obeying Him." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 60, no. 2

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir [as] said to one of his companions: "O Jabir, does it suffice for a person to profess to being a Shi'ah by attesting love for us, the Ahl al-Bayt? By Allah, our Shi'ah are none other than those who are careful of their duty to Allah and obey Him, and they are only known, O Jabir, through their humility, their trustworthiness, their frequent remembrance of Allah, their fasting and praying, their goodness toward their parents, their attending to their poor neighbors, the destitute, the indebted and the orphans, their honest speech, their recitation of the Qur'an, their restraint of their tongue when in the company of others, except when it is for a good purpose, and their care and loyalty towards their kinsfolk. The most beloved of Allah's servants are those who are the most careful of their duty to Him and those who strive most to obey Him. O Jabir, by Allah, we cannot attain proximity to Allah expect through obedience to Him, and we [Ahl al-Bayt] do not possess the right to grant immunity from the Fire, nor can anyone have a claim against Allah. Whoever is obedient to Allah is our friend, and whoever is disobedient to Him is our enemy, and you cannot benefit from our guardianship (wilayah) except though piety and obedience." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 60, no. 3

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir [as] said: "By Allah, we do not possess the right to grant immunity from Allah, nor is there any kinship between us and Allah, nor do we have any claim over Allah, nor we can attain proximity to Allah expect through obedience to Him, so whoever among you is obedient to Allah will benefit from our guardianship, and whoever among you is disobedient to Allah, our guardianship will be of no use to him. Woe unto you, do not be deceived by your self-conceit, woe unto you, do not be deceived by your self-conceit!" al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 61, no. 6

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) narrated on the authority of his infallible forefathers that the Prophet (saws) said: "Allah, Lofty and Sublime, has said: "O son of Adam! Obey me in what I have commanded you, and do not try to teach Me what [you think] is better for you."" Amali al-Saduq, p. 263, no. 7.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) narrated on the authority of his infallible forefathers that the Prophet (saws) said: "Allah, Mighty and Exalted, has said: "Whichever one of my servants obeys Me, I do not entrust him to anyone but Myself, and whichever one of my servants disobeys Me, I give charge of him to his own self, and do not care in which valley he perishes.""  Amali al-Saduq, p. 390, no. 2.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) was asked about the meaning of Allah's statement in Qur'an: "Be careful of your duty to Allah with the care that is due to Him." Q3:102, to which he replied: "It is that He must be obeyed and not disobeyed, remembered and not forgotten, thanked and not shown ingratitude." Kitab al-Zuhd, p. 17, no. 37; Ma'ani al-Akhbar, p. 240, no.1 

Amir al-Mu'minin (as) said: "Verily, Allah has made acts of obedience to Him the booty of the intelligent when the disabled fall short of performing them." Nahjul al-Balaghah, v.3, p.232, no.331

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Chapter 19: The Divine Obligation to Have Perseverance (Sabr) in Obeying Allah, and in Refraining from Disobeying Him.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: "On the Day of Judgement a large group of people will stand and go towards the gates of Paradise, where they will be asked: "Who are you?" They will reply: "We are the people of Perseverance." Then they will be asked: "In what did you persevere?" and they will reply: "We used to persevere in our acts of obedience to Allah, and in refraining from acts of disobedience to Him." Then Allah, Mighty and Exalted, will say: "They speak the truth, admit them into Paradise." This is in accordance with Allah's statement in the Qur'an (39:10): "Those who patiently persevere will truly receive a reward without measure!"" al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 60, no. 4.

Amir al-Mu'minin (as) said: "There are two types of perseverance: perseverance in times of affliction and misfortune, which is good and beautiful, but better than that is perseverance in the face of all that which Allah has forbidden you. Similarly, remembrance of Allah (dhkir) is of two types: remembrance of Allah, Mighty and Exalted, in times of affliction and misfortune, and better than that is remembering Allah when He has forbidden you something, in which case it acts as a barrier preventing you from that act.  al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 73, no. 11.

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) narrated that when his father, Imam 'Ali Zayn al-Abidin (as), was approaching death, he hugged him close to his chest and said: "O my son, I am advising you of the same thing that my father advised me in his will when he was approaching death, and the same thing that he said his father advised him - O my son! persevere with the truth, even if it is bitter"  al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 74, no. 13.

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) said: "There are two types of perseverance: perseverance in times of tribulation, which is a beautiful thing, and the better of the two is refraining from that which Allah has forbidden. "  al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 74, no. 14.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: "Persevere in this world, which is in fact equivalent to no more than one moment, for that which has passed of this world has neither pain nor pleasure for you (for they have moved on), and that which is yet to come is unknown to you. Rather, the world is the very moment that you are in now, so persevere in that movement in obeying Allah, and patiently refrain from disobeying Him." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 328, no. 4.

Imam 'Ali Amir al-Mu'minin (as) narrated that the Prophet (saws) said: "There are three types of perseverance: perseverance in times of hardship, perseverance in acts of obedience to Allah سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى, and perseverance in refraining from what Allah has forbidden. As for him who perseveres in times of hardship until the tribulation returns to whence it came, Allah ascribes for him three hundred degrees, the distance between one degree and the next being the distance between earth and the sky. As for him who perseveres in his acts of obedience to Allah, Allah writes for him six hundred degrees, of which the distance between one degree and the next is as the distance between the limits of the earth to the end of the "Arsh (Throne)". And as for the one who preservers in refraining from that which Allah has forbidden, Allah writes for him nine hundred degrees, of which the distance between one degree and the next is as the distance between the limits of the earth to the end of the 'Arsh [Throne]  al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 75, no. 15.

Imam Musa al-Kazim (pbuh) said to one of his sons: "O my son, beware that Allah should see committing an act of disobedience to Him which He has forbidden you, and beware that He should miss seeing you perform an act of obedience which he has commanded you." al-Faqih, v. 4, p. 292, no. 882


Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) narrated that when his father, Imam 'Ali Zayn al-Abidin (as), was approaching death, he hugged him close to his chest and said: "O my son! Persevere with the truth, even if it is bitter; you will be given the reward due to you without measure"  al-Faqih, v. 4, p. 292, no. 888

Amir al-Mu'minin (as) said: "There are to kinds of perseverance:  perseverance against what you love, and perseverance over what you hate." Then he said: "The friend of Muhammad is he who obeys Allah, even though he has no kinship [to the Prophet], and the enemy of Muhammad is he who disobeys Allah, even though he may have near kinship to the Prophet.  Nahj al-Balaghah , v. 3, p. 164, no. 55 and 96.

Amir al-Mu'minin (as) said: "What a difference there is between the actions whose pleasure fades away while its ill consequence remains, and the action whose hardship fades away while its reward remains. Nahj al-Balaghah , v. 3, p. 179, no. 121.

Imam 'Ali Amir al-Mu'minin (as) said: "Beware of disobeying Allah even in solitude, for the witness of that action is also the judge. Nahj al-Balaghah , v. 3, p. 231, no. 324.

Imam 'Ali Amir al-Mu'minin (as) said: "Verily, Allah has laid down reward in return for obedience to Him, and punishment for disobedience to Him  in order to repel His servants from His wrath and to drive them towards Paradise. Nahj al-Balaghah , v. 3, p. 241, no. 368.

Imam 'Ali Amir al-Mu'minin (as) said: "Be careful lest Allah see you disobeying Him or lest He miss you performing acts of obedience to Him, as a result of which you would be of the losers. Therefore, when you are feeling strong, be strong in your obedience to Allah, and when you are feeling weak, be weak in your disobedience to Allah. Nahj al-Balaghah , v. 3, p. 246, no. 383.

A man came to Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) saying: "O son of the Prophet, give me some advice", upon which the Imam replied: "Do not let Allah miss you performing that which He has commanded you and do not let Him see you committing that which He has forbidden you." The man asked: "What else?" Imam replied: "Nothing Else."" Mustatrafat al-Sara'ir, p. 164, no. 5.


Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) narrated on the authority of his infallible forefathers that the Prophet (saws) said: "On the day of Judgement, a caller appointed by Allah will call out: "Where are the people who persevered?" So a large group of people will stand up and will be approached by a troop of angels, who will ask them: "In what is it that you persevered?" They will reply: "We urged our souls to persevere in obeying Allah, and to refrain from disobeying Him." So Allah's caller will call out on His behalf: "My servants speak the truth, so make way for them to enter Paradise without any reckoning.""  Amali al-Tusi, v. 1, p. 100

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Chapter 20: The Divine Obligation to Be God-conscious at All Times (TAQWA)

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) narrated that Imam 'Ali (as) used to say: "An action performed with full God-consciousness is never deemed little, and how can it be deemed little when it is an action that is accepted?" al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 61, no. 5; Amali al-Tusi, v. 1, p. 60 (on the authority of Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as)

One of Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) companions, Mufaddal b. 'Umar, was sitting with him one day, when the conversation turned to the worth of deeds. Mufaddal narrates that he exclaimed: 'How few are my deeds!', upon which Imam (as) said: 'Be quiet, and ask Allah for forgiveness. The few deeds performed with God-consciousness (taqwa) are better than the many deeds performed without it.' I asked: 'How can deeds be many in number yet be devoid of God-consciousness?' He (as) replied: 'They can - just like a man who feeds people, is kind to his neighbors, makes provisions for the journey for people, but when the gateway to forbidden things is opened in front of him, he will enter it, for these are actions without God-consciousness. Whereas another person may not have acquired many deeds, but when the gateway to forbidden things is opened in front of him, he will never enter it." ,  al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 61, no. 7

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: "When Allah removes a servant from the degradation of sins and places him in the honour of God-consciousness, He has made him self-sufficient without the aid of wealth, and has honoured him without the aid of repute or noble family, and has granted him good company without the aid of people." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 61, no. 8

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) narrated that one of the sayings of the Prophet (saws) was: "The best provision is God-consciousness." al-Faqih, v. 4, p. 271, no. 828

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: "Whomsoever Allah removes form the disgrace of sinning and places in the honour of God-consciousness, it is as if Allah has made him self-sufficient without wealth, and has honoured him without the aid of a nobility, and has afforded him good company without the aid of a friend. And whoever fears Allah, Allah makes him feared by everything else, and whoever does not fear Allah, Allah makes him fearful of everything else. And whoever contents himself with whatever little sustenance he gets from Allah, Allah contents himself with whatever few good deeds he may have. And whoever is not ashamed to go out and earn his living, Allah lightens his load and brings down bounties upon his family. And whoever practice asceticism in this world, Allah establish wisdom in his heart, and causes wisdom to flow from his tongue, and gives him insight into the shortcomings, ills and cures of this world, and grants him a safe transition from this world to the Abode of Peace." al-Faqih, v. 4, p. 293, no. 887

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: "The worth of a man is his deeds, and his status and positions are his wealth, and his kindness and nobility are his God-consciousness." Ma'ani al-Akhbar, p. 405, no. 67

Imam 'Ali Amir al-Mu'minin (as) , is one of his sermons said: "Beware that sins are like unruly horses on whom their riders mount, and their reins have been let loose, so they plunge with them into Hell. Verily, piety and God-consciousness are like trained steeds on whom their riders mount with the reins in their hands, so that they make them enter Paradise." Nahj al-Balaghah , v. 1, p. 42, no. 16.

Imam 'Ali Amir al-Mu'minin (as) said: "Fear Allah and be conscious of Him to some degree, even though it be little, and place between you and Him a curtain (of shame), even though it be thin." Nahj al-Balaghah , v. 3, p. 206, no. 242.

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Chapter 21: The Divine Obligation to Refrain from Sinning and to Have Piety (Wara')

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: "We do not consider a man to be a believer unless he follows and adheres to all our commands, and indeed one of the facets of following and adhering to our commands is refraining from sinning, so adorn yourselves with it for Allah will have mercy upon you, and outwit our enemies with it, and Allah will revive you." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 63, no. 13.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: "I advise you to be God-conscious, pious and to strive, and know that striving without refraining from sins is useless." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 62, no. 1 and v. 2, p. 63, no. 11.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as), when asked what it meant to be pious, replied: "[A pious person] is one who refrains from all that Allah, Mighty and Exalted, has prohibited." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 63, no. 8.

One of Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) companions narrated that he (as) was exhorting them one day, and commanded them with respect to certain things and urged them to practice asceticism in this world, then he said: "I urge you to have piety, for what is with Allah can never be attained except through piety." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 62, no. 3.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: "Striving without refraining from sins is useless." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 62, no. 4.

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) said: "The most difficult act of worship is to refrain from sinning." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 62, no. 5.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: "Be God-conscious and God-fearing, and safeguard your faith with piety." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 62, no. 2.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as), as part of a longer tradition, said: "Verily, my companions are those who are exceptionally pious, who act for the sake of their Creator, and hope for His reward - those are my companions." al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 62, no. 6.

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) said: 'Allah, Mighty and Exalted, has said: "O son of Adam, keep away from that which I have forbidden you, and you will be the most pious of people."'  al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 62, no. 7.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: 'I urge you to have God-consciousness, piety, fortitude, honesty, to return promptly the property entrusted to your care, to be good-natured and neighborly, and call people to yourselves [i.e., attract them] without the use of your tongue, and be such that you are an adornment [for us] and not a disgrace [to us]. I urge you to lengthen your bowing (ruku') and your prostration (sujud), for when one of you lengthen his bowing and his prostration, Iblis shouts out disapprovingly from behind him: "O Woe unto him, how he has obeyed while I have disobeyed, and how he prostrates while I had refused to do so."' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 63, no. 9.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said to one of his companions: 'O 'Isa b. 'Abdullah, a follower of ours who lives in a town with a population of a hundred of more, is not from us whilst there is someone more pious than him in that town, and nor is that a mark of respect for him.' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 63, no. 10.

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) said: 'Assist us by being pious, for the one who meets Allah from among you with piety, will have emancipation and joy with Allah, Mighty and Exalted.' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 63, no. 12.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: 'Call people to yourselves [i.e, to Islam] without the use of your tongue but instead by letting them see piety, fortitude, prayer and goodness from you, for indeed that is true propagation.' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 64, no. 14.

Imam Musa al-Khadim (as) said: 'Very often I heard my father say: "A person is not considered one of our Shi'ah if he is not such that even the young ladies, who have always been kept in seclusion form the outside world, would talk about his piety in their private chambers, and a person is not considered from among our friends if he lives in a town with a population of then thousands, and Allah has created someone more pious than him among them."' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 64, no. 15.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) narrates on the authority of his infallible forefathers that the Prophet (saws), in his advice to Imam 'Ali (as), said: 'O 'Ali, there are three virtues that if a person meets Allah possessing them he will be considered the best of people: One who comes to Allah having performed all that Allah has enjoyed upon him - he will be the best worshiper. One who had refrained from all that Allah has forbidden - he will be the most pious of people. And one who contented himself with whatever sustenance Allah has given him - he will be the most self-sufficient of all people.' Then he continued, saying: ' O 'Ali, there are three qualities that if a person lacks, his actions are not considered complete: piety to hinder him from committing sins, good-naturedness in order for him to treat people with care and kindness, and clemency with which to counter the folly of the ignorant.' Then he continued, saying: 'O 'Ali, Islam is naked and its clothing is modesty, its adornment is chastity, its valour is good deeds, and its pillars are piety.' al-Faqih, v. 4, p. 258, no. 824

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: 'No sooner does Allah combine piety and asceticism in a person that I expect him to enter Paradise.' Thawab al-A'mal, p. 163, no. 1

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) said: 'Our guardianship can be obtained only by performing good deeds and refraining from sins.' Sifat al-Shi'ah, p. 11, no. 22.

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: 'A person is not considered one of our Shi'ah if he lives in a town with a population of a hundred thousands, and there is someone among them who is more pious than him.' Mustatrafat al-Sara'ir, p. 146, no. 20

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: 'A person is not considered one of our Shi'ah if he proclaims [our virtues] with his tongue, yet his actions contradict our actions and sayings. Our Shi'ah are those whose tongues utter in harmony with that which in their hearths, and they adhere to our sayings and act in accordance with our actions - those are our Shi'ah.' Mustatrafat al-Sara'ir, p. 147, no. 21

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: 'By Allah, you are indeed on the religion of Allah and His angels, so assist us [in upholding that religion] by piety and striving. I urge you to keep up prayer and worship, and I urge you to refrain from committing sins.' Amali al-Tusi, v. 1, p. 31

Imam 'Ali al-Naqi (as) narrates on the author of his infallible forefathers and Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) that he said: 'I urge you to be pious, for indeed that is the very religion to which we adhere, and it is through that that we have conviction in Allah Almighty. It is the prerequisite of anyone who loves us and professes our guardianship, so that they may not unnecessarily inconvenience us by demanding intercession (without having made efforts to attain piety)". Amali al-Tusi, v. 1, p. 287

Imam 'Ali al-Naqi (as) narrated on the author of his infallible forefathers, that Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said to one of his companions: "O Sama'ah, by Allah, He will not make anyone from among you to enter the Fire, so compete with each other for the highest stages (in Paradise), and be a cause of distress for your enemies through your piety.' Amali al-Tusi, v. 1, p. 301

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Chapter 22: The Divine Obligation to Have Self-restraint

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) said: 'There is no act of worship better in the eyes of Allah than self-restraint of the stomach and the private parts [from overindulgence].' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 65, no. 8

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) said: 'The best form of worship is self-restraint of the stomach and the private parts.' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 64, no. 2

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) said: 'The best act of worship a servant of Allah can do is to restrain his stomach and his private parts.' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 64, no. 1

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) narrated that the Prophet [saws] said: 'Most of my ummah who will enter the Fire will be as a result of two cavities: the stomach and the private parts.' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 64, no. 5

The Holy Prophet (saws) said: 'There are three things that I fear for my ummah after my death: going astray after having been guided, dissension which will cause people to go astray, and the carnal desires of the stomach and the private parts.' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 65, no. 6

A man came to Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) saying: 'I am a man who is weak in his actions and fasts very little, but I try to eat only that which is permissible', to which Imam (as) replied: 'Then which striving is there better than restrain of the stomach and the private parts?!' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 64, no. 4

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) narrated that Imam 'Ali (as) used to say: 'The best form of worship is chastity.' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 64, no. 3

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (as) said: 'There is no act of worship better than restraint of the stomach and the private parts.' al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 65, no. 7

Amir al-Mu'minin (as), in his will to Muhammad b. Hanafiyyah, said: 'One who does not allow his soul to give in to its carnal desires archives its integrity and maturity.' al-Faqih, v. 4, p. 275, no. 830 

The Holy Prophet (saws) said: 'Whoever restrains two things for me, Allah will guarantee him Paradise - whoever restrains for me that which is between his beard, and that which is between his legs [i.e., his tongue and his private parts], Allah will guarantee him Paradise.' Ma'ani al-Akhbar, p. 411, no. 99

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: 'Whoever refrains from troubling his neighbor, Allah will disregard his offences on the Day of Judgement, and whoever restrains his stomach and his private parts will be made a delighted king in Paradise, and whoever frees a believing person will have a house built for him in Paradise.' Amali al-Saduq, p. 443, no. 4

The Holy Prophet [saws], in one of his sermons, said: 'One who is in a position to be able to commit an indecency upon a woman or a girl, and yet abandons the act for fear of Allah, Allah will forbid the Fire from touching him, and will grant him safety from the Great Terror, and will make him enter Paradise.  And if he does commit an indecency towards her, Allah will forbid him from ever entering Paradise, and will make him enter Hell.' 'Iqab al-A'mal, p.334

Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (as) said: 'Verily, the Shi'ah of Ja'far are those who restrain their stomach and private parts, and who strive and work hard for their Creator, and who hope for His reward and yet fear His punishment. So if you see such people, they are my Shi'ah.' Shifat al-Shi'ah, p. 11, no. 21

Amir al-Mu'minin (as) said: 'The worth of a man is measured according to his prosperity, his truthfulness according to his valour, his courage according to his self-respect, and his chastity according to his sense of shame.' Nahj al-Balaghah, v. 3, p. 163, no. 47

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