Riyad Us-Saliheen (Gardens of the Righteous)


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  • Riyad Us-Saliheen (Gardens of the Righteous)


  • Chapter 288
    Prohibition of Show-off

    Allah, the Exalted, says:

    "And they were commanded not, but that they should worship Allah, and worship none but Him Alone (abstaining from ascribing partners to Him).'' (98:5)

    "Do not render in vain your Sadaqah (charity) by reminders of your generosity or by injury, like him who spends his wealth to be seen of men.'' (2:264)

    "... and to be seen of men, and they do not remember Allah but little.'' (4:142)

     

    1616. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, "Almighty Allah says, `I am the One Who is most free from want of partners. He who does a thing for the sake of someone else beside Me, I discard him and his polytheism..''
    [Muslim].

    Commentary:  "He who does a thing for the sake of someone else beside Me'' here means to do something virtuous for mere show for worldly benefit, or to gain the reputation of being pious. "I discard him and his polytheism'' means that "I nullify his good deeds and deprive him of the reward.'' In this Hadith any virtue done for the sake of mere show has been likened to Shirk to make its viciousness and harm obvious.

    However, this is Ash-Shirk Al-Asghar, and those who commit it will not be forbidden access to Jannah. They will, after the punishment in Hell, ultimately enter Jannah. Whereas, those who are guilty of Ash-Shirk Al-Akbar and sheer Shirk will abide in Hell forever.

     

    1617. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying, "The first to be judged on the Day of Resurrection will be a man who had died as a martyr. He will be brought forward. Allah will remind him of the favours He had bestowed upon him and the man will acknowledge them. Then He will ask him: `What did you do to express gratitude for it?' The man will reply: `I fought for Your Cause till I was martyred.' Allah will say: `You have lied. You fought so that people might call you courageous; and they have done so.' Command will then be issued about him and he will be dragged on his face and thrown into Hell. Next a man who had acquired and imparted knowledge and read the Qur'an will be brought forward, Allah will remind him of the favours He had bestowed upon him and the man will acknowledge them. Then He will ask him: `What did you do to express gratitude for it?' The man will reply: `I acquired knowledge and taught it, and read the Qur'an for Your sake.' Allah will say to him: `You have lied. You acquired knowledge so that people might call you a learned (man), and you read the Qur'an so that they might call you a reciter, and they have done so.' Command will then be issued about him, and he will be dragged on his face and thrown into Hell. Next a man whom Allah had made affluent and to whom Allah had given plenty of wealth, will be brought forward, Allah will remind him of the favours He had bestowed upon him and the man will acknowledge them. He will ask him: `What did you do to express gratitude for it?' The man will reply: `I did not neglect any of the ways You liked wealth to be spend liberally for Your sake'. Allah will say to him: `You have lied. You did it so that people might call you generous, and they have done so.' Command will then be issued about him and he will be dragged on his face and thrown into Hell.''
    [Muslim].

    Commentary:  We learn from this Hadith that:

    1. Almighty Allah will first of all bring the show-offs to account for their pretentions.

    2. No virtue will be accepted without Ikhlas (sincerity), no matter how great it may be. A pretender who does good deeds for mere show will be consigned to Hell rather than being rewarded with Jannah.

     

    1618. `Abdullah bin `Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) said: Some people told me, "We visit our rulers and we tell them things contrary to those which we say when we depart from them.'' `Abdullah bin `Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) replied: "In the era of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) we considered this to be an act of hypocrisy.''
    [Al-Bukhari].

    Commentary:  This Hadith has already been mentioned (Hadith No. 1542) with a variation of wording in the other version. In any case, we learn from this Hadith that flattering the rulers, falsely praising them and telling lies before them to win their pleasure constitute hypocrisy, which is a great offence. Such hypocrisy prevents them from knowing the true state of affairs. What sincerity and well-wishing demand is that the real state of affairs is placed before them so that they come to know the true condition of their subjects.

     

    1619. Jundub (May Allah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (PBUH) said, "He who so acts to show off, Allah will disgrace him on the Day of Resurrection, and he who does good deeds so that people (may hold him in high esteem), Allah will expose his hidden evil intentions before the people on the Day of Resurrection.''
    [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

    Commentary:  This Hadith shows the consequences of different acts of show-off and informs us that such acts will be a cause of humiliation and disgrace on the Day of Judgement.

     

    1620. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, "A person who acquires (religious) knowledge, which is (normally) acquired to gain the Pleasure of Allah, (for the sole reason) to secure worldly comforts will not even smell the fragrance of Jannah on the Day of Resurrection (i.e., will not enter Jannah).''
    [Abu Dawud].

    Commentary:  It is an act of great virtue to acquire religious knowledge provided it is attained for the Pleasure of Allah. If one acquires it for worldly gains, he will be in fact committing a grave sin for which he will not even smell the fragrance of Jannah, that is to say in the first instance because after suffering the punishment for it in Hell, he will be sent to Jannah when Allah will so desire it.

     

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