The Criterion Between The Allies Of the Merciful & The Allies Of the Devil

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  • The Criterion Between The Allies Of the Merciful & The Allies Of the Devil

  • Chapter 4

    The allies of Allah are of two levels: forerunners, those brought near, and those of the right hand who acted in moderation. Allah has mentioned them in a number of places in His sacred Book such as in the beginning of sura number 56, and again at the end of the same sura, and in suras 76, 83, and 35. In the beginning of the sura called Al-waaqi'a (56) Allah mentioned the Greater Qiyama, and at the end of it, He mentioned the Lesser Qiyama. In the beginning of this sura, He said:

    [When the inevitable event comes to pass * There will be no one to deny its reality. * Bringing (some) low, raising (others) high, * When the earth will be shaken to its depths, * And the mountains will be crushed and split, * Until they become mere floating, scattered dust. * And you become three categories * Those of the right hand, and what are those of the right hand? * And those of the left hand, and what are those of the left hand? * And the forerunners, the forerunners * They are the ones brought near, * In gardens of bliss * Many from the early generations, * And a few from the later generations.] Qur'an 56/1-14

    This is the division of people at the time of the Greater Qiyama in which Allah will collect together all the people of the early and the later generations, as Allah as described in many places in His book. Then, Allah said at the end of the same sura:

    [So why, then, when it (i.e. the soul of a dying person) reaches the throat * And you, at that time are looking on, * And we are closer to him than you, but you do not see * So why, if you truly are not to be held to account * Do you not call it back (i.e. stop death), if you speak the truth? * Then, if he is one of those brought near, * Then rest and complete satisfaction, and a garden of bliss. * And if he is one of those of the right hand * Then "Peace unto you" from those of the right hand * And if he is one of the deniers, those who are lost * For him is a resting place of boiling water * And the basking in a ferocious fire * Verily, this is the certain truth * So glorify the name of your Lord, the Great.] Qur'an 56/83-96

    Allah said in sura number 76:

    [We surely have shown him (i.e. man) the way whether (he chooses to be) grateful or ungrateful, rejecting. * Verily, we have prepared for the rejectors chains and bonds and roaring fire. * The righteous drink from a cup whose mixer is kaafuur. * (There is) a spring from which drink the slaves of Allah, they cause it to spring forth at will. * They (used to) fulfill their oaths and fear a day whose evil is widespread. * They (used to) feed others (their) food in spite of their love for it: poor people, orphans, and prisoners. * (They say) We only feed you for the pleasure of Allah, we want no reward from you nor thanks. * Verily we fear from our Lord a day long, and difficult. * So Allah protected them from the evil of that day, and will give to them a beautiful light, and joy. * And He will reward them for their patience a garden and silk.] Qur'an 76/3-12

    [No! Surely the destiny of the wicked is to an oppressive prison. * And what can make you understand the reality of that prison? * A destiny which has already been set. * Woe, on that day, to the deniers * Those who deny the (existence of the) Day of Judgement. * None deny that except for every transgressor and sinner. * When our verses are read to him, he says: "Stories of the ancients!" * It is not so! Rather, the sins which they used to commit have coated their hearts (preventing them from understanding) * On that day they will be blocked from the seeing of their Lord * Then, they will enter the Hell fire. * Then it will be said to them: "This is the reality which you used to deny!" * No! Surely the destiny of the righteous is to a wide and spacious place * And what can make you understand the reality of that wide and spacious place? * A destiny which has already been set. * The righteous will be in bliss * On comfortable seats, looking (i.e. at Allah) * One can recognize in their faces the brightness of bliss. * They are given to drink from sealed bottles of wine. * Drinking it leaves the smell of finest musk. For this should be the competition of those who compete. * It (the wine) is a mixture of tasneem (the finest drink of the people of paradise). * A spring with which drink those brought near.] Qur'an 83/7-28

    On the authority of Ibn Abbas, and this is the statement of others of the early generations: A mixture is prepared (i.e. from the spring of tasneem) for those of the right hand, while those brought near are allowed to drink directly from the spring as they wish. It is as they said (the language also supports this interpretation). Because Allah said: "They drink with it" (yashrabu bihaa), and did not day "They drink from it" (yashrabu minhaa). This is because the word for drink in this way includes the concept of quenching of thirst. One may drink, but not necessarily completely quench his thirst. Thus, when it is said: "They drink from it", it does not denote quenching of thirst, but when it is said: "They drink with it", the meaning becomes that they fully quench their thirst and eliminate their need for drink. So those brought near totally quench their thirst with pure tasneem from the spring, and are not in need of anything else of lesser degree along with it. This is in contrast to those of the right hand for whom a mixture is prepared. This is just as Allah said also in another verse:

    [Its mixer is kaafuur, a spring from which the slaves of Allah drink, they cause it to spring forth at will.] Qur'an 76/5-6

    The "slaves of Allah" in this verse are the same as the ones referred to as "those brought near" elsewhere. This is because rewards are of similar nature to actions, both in good and in bad, as the Prophet (sas) said:

    "Whoever relieves a believer of a hardship of this life, Allah will relieve him of a hardship of the day of Qiyama. Whoever gives relief to someone in difficult (financial) straits, Allah will make it easy for him in this life and in the hereafter. Whoever conceals the fault of a Muslim, Allah will conceal for him his faults in this life and in the hereafter. And Allah is (engaged) in the aid of His slave as long as the slave is engaged in the aid of his brother. And whoever travels a road searching for knowledge, Allah will make his road to paradise easy for him. And whenever a group of people come together in one of the Houses of Allah, reciting the Qur'an and teaching it to one another, peace will descend on them, mercy will cover them, the angels will congregate in large numbers over them, and Allah will mention them to those around Him. And whoever is slow in application, Allah will not be fast in assigning its reward." (Muslim)

    "The Merciful has mercy on those who are merciful. Be merciful with those on earth, so that He who is in the heavens may have mercy on you." (At-Tirmidhi said: A good, sound hadith)

    "Allah says: I am the Merciful (Ar-Rahman), I created the womb (Ar-Rahm), and I derived its name from my name. So, whoever maintains its relations, I will maintain my relation with them, and whoever cuts off its relations, I will cut them off."

    Examples of this type are many in the Qur'an and the Sunnah.``

    The allies of Allah are of two types, as we have said: those brought near, and those of the right hand. The Prophet mentioned the actions of the two groups in the hadith of the awliyaa' (allies) saying:

    "Allah ta'ala says: I have declared war on anyone who is an enemy of any of my allies. There is nothing better with which my slave can come closer to me than fulfilling all that I have made obligatory upon him. Then, my slave will continue to come closer to me be making extra efforts until I love him. When I love him, I am his hearing with which he hears, his sight with which he sees, his hand with which he strikes, and his leg with which he walks. If he asks me, I will give him, if he seeks refuge with me, I will give him refuge. I have not hesitated in anything which I do as I hesitate in taking the soul of my believing slave. He dislikes death, and I dislike annoying him, but he must meet his death."

    The righteous, those of the right hand are those who seek to come close to Allah with all that is obligatory: they do that which Allah has ordered them to do, and avoid that which Allah has forbidden them, and do not demand of themselves the doing of the commendable but less than obligatory (i.e. the mandoob), or the avoiding of some of the disrecommended of the allowed (i.e. the makrooh).

    As for the forerunners, those brought near, they sought to come close to Allah with extra efforts after the obligatory. They did the obligatory and the commendable, and avoided the forbidden and the disrecommended. When they sought to come close to Him with everything within their ability of that which they love, Allah's love for them became complete, as He said (as reported by the Prophet):

    "Then, my slave will continue to come closer to me by making extra efforts until I love him."

    He means unqualified love, as in Allah's statement:

    [Guide us to the straight path, the path of those upon whom You have bestowed Your grace, not the path of those with whom You are angry, nor of those who have gone astray.] Qur'an 1/5-7

    i.e. upon whom You have bestowed Your grace - Your complete and unqualified grace which has been mentioned in another aya:

    [And whoever obeys Allah and His Prophet are among those upon whom Allah has bestowed His grace: the prophets and the ever-truthful, ever-believing, and the martyrs, and the righteous doers of good, and what good companions these are.] Qur'an 4/69

    For those brought near, ordinary allowed actions (i.e. which are neither obligatory nor forbidden) become acts of obedience to Allah with which they come closer to Allah. Thus all of their actions are worship of Allah, and so they drink from the spring straight and pure, just as their actions were purely for Allah ta'ala. On the other hand, those who were moderate their efforts, had in their actions things that, though not forbidden, were done for their selves and in their own interest. They are neither punished nor rewarded for such actions, and they do not drink directly from the spring. Rather, a mixture is prepared for them from the drink of those brought near (mixed with lesser ingredients) according to the way they mixed their actions in this life.

    Analogous to this is the division of the prophets into slave messengers and prophet kings. Allah gave Muhammad (sas) the choice between being a slave and a messenger or being a prophet and a king, and he chose the former. Prophet kings are like the Prophet Dawood, Sulaiman, and others (prayers and peace of Allah be upon them). Allah said, informing us of the statement of Sulaiman:

    [My Lord, forgive me and give me a dominion which will not be allowed to anyone after me, verily You are the Giver. * And so we brought the wind under his control - it goes under his command, gently, wherever he wishes. * And also the shayateen, including every builder and diver * And others bound up in shackles. * This is our grant, so give or withhold, no account will be asked.] Qur'an 38/35-39

    i.e. give to whomever you wish, and deny whomever you wish, there is no account-taking upon you. Thus, the prophet king does what Allah orders him, avoids what Allah has forbidden, and acts freely in whatever worldly power or property he has been granted in whatever way he chooses and likes, without any sin upon him.

    As for the slave messenger, he gives to no one without the order of his Lord, he cannot give whom he wishes nor can he withhold from whom he wishes. He gives to whom Allah has ordered him to give, and assigns responsibilities and powers to those whom Allah has ordered him to assign. Thus all of his actions are acts of worship to Allah ta'ala, as the Prophet (sas) himself said in the hadith found in Sahih Bukhari:

    "Verily, by Allah, I give no one, and I withhold from no one. I am only a divider, I place wherever I am ordered."

    For this reason, Allah has described the public properties in Islam as belonging to Allah and His Prophet, as in His statement:

    [Say: The spoils are Allah's and His Prophet's.] Qur'an 8/1

    [That which Allah has caused to come back to His Prophet from the people of the villages is Allah's and His Prophet's.] Qur'an 59/7

    [And know that one fifth of that (property) which you have captured belongs to Allah and to the Prophet] Qur'an 8/41

    Thus, the clearest of the opinions of the scholars is that these properties are to be spent in any ways loved by Allah and His Prophet, according to the ijtihaad (jurisprudential effort) of the head of the Islamic state. This is the position of Imam Malik and other early scholars. It has been mentioned as the position of Imam Ahmad. It has also been said about the one-fifth portion of the spoils: It is divided into five parts (i.e. according to the five mentioned in the rest of the aya above - See Qur'an 59/7), as is the opinion of Ash-shafi'i, and the most famous opinion of Ahmad, and it has been said: it is divided into three parts, which is the opinion of Abu Hanifa.

    What is intended here is that the slave messenger is superior to the prophet king, just as Ibrahim, Musa, 'Isa, and Muhammad, upon them be peace, are superior to Yusuf, Dawood, and Sulaiman, upon them be peace. In the same way, the forerunners, those brought near are superior to the righteous, those of the right hand who are not of those brought near nor forerunners. So, whoever performs all that Allah has ordered him to perform, and does of the allowed (halal) whatever he wishes, is of the second group, and whoever does everything according to what Allah loves and is pleased with, and seeks the allowed only to aid him in the performing of the obligatory, is of the first group.

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