How to Properly Practice Ikhlaas

Reference: Al Fataawaa al Kubraa: 2/272

…and similar to this is an account that is mentioned, that a person came across the statement of the Messenger – صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم:.

“Whoever practices sincerity for Allaah for forty mornings, the springs of wisdom would spring forth from his heart to his tounge.” [1]

So this person practiced sincerity – according to him – for forty mornings, in order to attain wisdom, so he didn’t attain it. He complained to a wise scholar who told him; ‘You did not practice sincerity for [attaining the pleasure of ] Allaah the Exalted, you only practiced sincerity for attaining wisdom.’

Meaning that sincerity to Allaah the Glorified and Exalted, is seeking His Face, if you attain this you would attain wisdom as a consequence, but if attaining wisdom is what is intended to begin with, then sincerity for Allaah the Glorified would not have taken place, the only thing that took place is the notion that you are practicing sincerity for Allaah the Elevated.

Likewise is the statement of the Messenger – صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم:

”No person would practice humility for Allaah except that Allaah would raise him.” [2]

So if someone practices humility in order to be raised by Allaah amongst the people, then he is not practicing humility, because his intent is to be raised and that is contradictory to humility.

The source of this article in a treatise on Ikhlaas by Shaykh Farkoos.
[1] This Hadeeth was declared as inauthentic by al Albaanee in ‘As Silsilah ad Da’eefah’: #38 and ‘Da’eef at Targheeb wat Tarheeb’: #2

[2] Collected by Muslim 12/141.

(Translator: Abu Abdul-Waahid, Nadir Ahmad)


The state of the Muslim world at Shaikh ul-Islaam’s time

References: ‘Dawah Shaikhul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah wa-Athruha fi al-Harakat al-Islamiyyah al-Mu’asirah’ by Salahud-Din Maqbool Ahmad, Notes by Dr. Abdullah al-Farsi (hafidhahullah) and Articles on the biography of Shaikhul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah by Abu Sufyan Farid Ibn Abdulwahid Ibn Haibatan, Aisha bint Muhammad and Abu Rumaysah (May Allah reward them all)

‘This Ilm (Deen) will be carried by the trustworthy ones of each generation.
Negating from it the tahreef (alterations) of the ones going beyond bounds,
the false assumptions of the liars, and the ta’weel (false interpretations) of the ignorant.’

[Reported by al-Bayhaqee and authenticated by Shaikh al-Albanee in Mishkat (no. 248)]

‘Allah will raise for this community at the end of every hundred years
one who will revive His religion.’

[Abu Dawood (3/4278), al-Hakim, at-Tabaranee in al-Ausat. Authenticated by al-Albanee in as-Saheehah (2/150)]

Islamic history stands witness to a great number of scholars, reformers and callers to the path of Allah; those who followed in the footsteps of the Salafus-Salih (the pious-predecessors) in belief and action, in calling to Allah and in assigning priorities of life; in valor and bravery, in perils and struggle and in devoting their lives wholeheartedly towards the affairs that benefit in the Hereafter. Amongst these outstanding and remarkable personalities is
al-Allamah, al-Imam, Shaikhul-Islam Taqi ud-Deen Ahmad Ibn Taymiyyah .
– whose memoirs adorn the pages of Islamic history with their perpetual achievements and exceptional influences.

Ibn Taymiyyah was an outstanding scholar who mastered many fields of Islamic learning and lived in an era of much political, social and religious upheaval. At his time, the Muslim nation faced many threats; both from within and beyond – the most crucial of which were:
1. The invasions of the crusaders from the west.
2. The treachery of the Fatimites in their alliance with the crusaders against the Islamic state.
3. The Tartar oppression from the east, and their senseless massacres and destruction.
4. Corruption of kings and rulers, and their distance from Islam.
5. The spread of rigid blind-following of Madhhabs causing deep sectarian divides.
6. Spread of heretical beliefs and sorcery amongst the Muslims due to the efforts of the people of innovation and desires from amongst the Shiites, the Rafidah, the Sufis and the Baatinis.
It was in this time of tribulations that Allah ordained for Ibn Taymiyyah to confront these challenges and to defend the pure Deen against the tidal wave of misconceptions, deviations, innovations and heresies.

Taken from As-Sunnah Newsletter –

Encounter with the Tartars

In the year 699H, when the Tartar ruler, Qazaan, was about to attack Damascus, Ibn Taymiyyah boldly confronted him while others trembled in his presence. He reminded Qazaan of the Tartar infringements on the sanctities of the Muslims and was able to convince him not to attack the city, he said, ‘You claim to be a Muslim. I have been told that you have with you a Qadhi and an Imam, a Shaikh and a mu’adhdhin; yet, you have deemed it proper to march upon Muslims. Your fore-fathers were heathens, but they always abstained from breaking the promise once made by them. They redeemed the pledges they made, but you violate the word of honor given by you. You trample underfoot your solemn declarations in order to lay a hand on the servants of Allah!’ [Al-Kawakib ud-Durriyah, p. 25, also see, al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah (14/122-123)] Ibn Taymiyyah’s courage impressed Qazaan who left Damascus unharmed and freed those whom he held captive.

Though some of the Tartar rulers claimed to be Muslims, they had little regard for following the religion of Islam or for the sanctity of life. Ibn Katheer says, ‘during the time of Jahiliyah, the people used to abide by the misguidance and ignorance that they invented by sheer opinion and lusts. The Tatar (Mongols) abided by the law that they inherited from their king Genghis Khan who wrote al-Yasiq, for them. This book contains some rulings that were derived from various religions, such as Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Many of these rulings were derived from his own opinion and desires. Later on, these rulings became the followed law among his children, preferring them to the Law of the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His Messenger. Therefore, whoever does this, he is a disbeliever who deserves to be fought against, until he reverts to Allah’s and His Messenger’s decisions, so that no law, minor or major, is referred to except by His Law.’

In the year, 702H, the Tartars attacked again and this time they found Shaikhul-Islam in the ranks of the soldiers. Since it was Ramadaan, Ibn Taymiyyah issued a fatawa for the breaking of the fasts for the soldiers. His presence in the battlefield had a great influence in defeating the Tartars and conquering Shaqaab, and this was the last ever battle between the Tartars and Muslims. Shaikhul-Islam says, ‘This was a magnificent victory, the like of which the Muslims had not seen [in that age]: the imposing edifice of the Tatar kingdom, that had humiliated the people of Islam, was never routed or defeated the way it was defeated at the gate of Damascus in the great battle [of Shaqaab] during which Allah showered upon us so many of His Favors that we cannot enumerate them, neither generally nor specifically.’ [Manaqib ash-Sham wa-Ahlih (Virtues of al-Sham and Its People)]

Taken from As-Sunnah Newsletter –

Ibn Taymiyyah’s Battle against Innovators and Deviant Sects:

Shaikhul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah dedicated a lot of effort towards refuting various innovative sects. He even physically challenged some individuals from the heretical Sufi sect, known as the Bataa’ihiyyah that indulged in feats like walking over fire to amaze the common masses. He proposed that he would walk on fire with them on the condition that they wash themselves first with vinegar and hot water. Their refusal exposed their folly, and Ibn Taymiyyah thus exposed the charlatans of the Bataa’ihiyyah sect. [See, Majmoo al-Fatawa (11/456-457) and al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah (14/36)] He also refuted Muhiyyuddin Ibn Arabi and the heresy of Wahdat al-Wajood.

Ibn Hajr said, ‘… From the astonishing qualities of this man (i.e. Ibn Taymiyyah) was that he was the strongest amongst men against the people of innovation, the Rawaafidah, the Hululiyyah, and the Ittihaadiyyah, and his works on this are many and famous, and his fatawa on them cannot be counted… It is obligatory upon the one, who has donned the robe of knowledge and possesses intelligence that he consider the words of a man based upon his well-known books or from the tongues of those who are trusted to accurately convey his words – then to isolate from all of this what is rejected and warn from them with the intention of giving sincere advice and to praise him for his excellent qualities and for what he was correct in as is the way of the scholars.

If there were no virtues of Shaykh Taqi ad-Deen except for his famous student Shaykh Shams ad-Deen ibn al-Qayyim al-Jawziyyah, writer of many works, from which both his opponents and supporters benefited from then this would be a sufficient indication of his (ibn Taymiyyah’s) great position. And how could it be otherwise when the Shafa’ee Imams and others, not to speak of the Hanbalees, of his time testified to his prominence in the (Islamic) sciences…’ [From Ibn Hajr’s endorsement of ‘Radd al-Waafir’ contained at the end]

With regards refuting the people of innovation and the danger they pose to the Muslims Ibn Taymiyyah said, ‘When some people asked Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal that they felt uneasy about criticizing people, he replied, ‘If I were to remain silent, how would the ignorant masses know the truth from falsehood?’ Those who introduce heretical writings which oppose the Qur’aan and the Sunnah and those who innovate in matters of worship, then it is obligatory that they be exposed and that the Muslims be warned against them – by unanimous agreement of the Muslims scholars. In fact, when Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal was asked about a person who fasted, prayed and secluded himself in the mosque for worship; if he was dearer to him than a person who spoke out against the innovators? He replied, ‘When he fasts and prays and secludes himself, then he does so for the benefit of his own self. However, when he speaks out against the innovators, he does so for the benefit of the Muslims in general, and this is more virtuous.’

So it is clear that openly opposing the innovators is of general benefit to the Muslims and is considered one of the types of struggles in the path of Allah. Since purifying the religion of Allah and defending it from their attacks is a collective obligation – as is agreed upon by the scholars. For, Allah did not raise up some people to oppose the innovators, then the religion would suffer harm, corruption and deviation. Indeed, this type of corruption is even greater then the corruption resulting from the disbelievers conquering the Muslims. Since when the disbelievers conquer the Muslims, they do not corrupt their hearts, or their religion, except after some time. Whereas, the innovators corrupt the hearts from the very beginning.’ [Majmoo al-Fatawa (28/231-232) Quoted from al-Istiqamah Magazine]

Taken from As-Sunnah Newsletter –

The Superiority Of the Muslims Over the Jews and Christians

“So, it is known that those who transmitted what Muhammad called to of the Religion and Shari’ah, and transmitted what he came with of signs and miracles, are greater than those who transmitted the likes of these from Musa and ‘Isa. Likewise, what he came with of these are, in and of themselves, greater than what Musa and ‘Isa came with. In fact, the one who looks with a sound mind in these times to what the Muslims have of beneficial knowledge and righteous actions, and compares that to what is with the Jews and Christians, will come to know that there is a huge, massive difference between them.

This is because that which is with the Muslims of the Tawhid of Allah, knowledge of His Names and Attributes, His Angels, Prophets, Messengers, the Hereafter, the descriptions of the Paradise and Hell, reward and punishment, promise and threat – all of these are much greater and loftier than that which is with the Jews and Christians, and this is clear to any who look into it.

And that which is with the Muslims of outer and inner acts of worship – such as the five daily prayers, the other prayers, the remembrances and supplications, etc. – are greater and loftier than that which is with the People of the Book. Such is also the case with the laws governing transactions, marriage, legal punishments – that which is with the Muslims is greater and loftier than what the Jews and Christians have.

So, the Muslims are superior to them in regards to every bit of beneficial knowledge and righteous action, and this is evident to anyone with the slightest bit of intelligence, and this does not require much effort to realize…

And every person of intellect admits this, even from the Jews and Christians. They admit that the religion of the Muslims is a true religion, and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, and that whoever obeys him enters Paradise. In fact, they even admit that the religion of Islam is better than their own religion, as was mentioned by the philosophers, such as Ibn Sina, etc. The philosophers of the world are agreed that there is no law better than this Law. However, those who refuse to follow it excuse themselves by saying that it is not obligatory for him to follow it, since the Messenger was sent to the unlettered Arabs in exclusion to the People of the Book, and if his religion is true, then our religion is also true, and the paths to Allah are many…”

[‘Majmu’ al-Fatawa’; 4/104-105]

Unconditional Obedience

by Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah

(Translated by Abu ‘Abdis-Salam)

“Indeed the people of Truth and the Sunnah do not follow anyone [unconditionally] except the messenger of Allaah SAW, the one who does not speak from his desires – it is only revelation revealed to him.
Belief in all that he narrated is obligatory, as is his [unconditional] obedience in all that he commanded. This rank is not given to anyone other than him, [whether] from the Imaams [or other than them]. Rather, statements of every individual are taken and left, except the messenger of Allaah SAW [whose statements are always taken].

So whoever makes a person other than the messenger of Allaah SAW [a criterion] such that whoever loves him and stands by him becomes from Ahl-us-Sunnah wal-Jamaa’ah, and whoever opposes him becomes from the people of innovation and splitting – as that is found in the groups following the leaders of kalaam with regards to the religion – then he is from the people of innovation, misguidance and splitting!”

Al-Istighfaar (Asking Forgiveness)


Sheikh-ul-Islam ibn Taymiyyah rahimahullaah

Majmoo al-Fataawaa 10/88-90

The Messenger of Allah, sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam, said:

{{The master of invocations for forgiveness is that the servant says:

O’ my ‘ilâh You are my Lord, there is no ‘ilâh but You. You created me, and I am your bondservant, and I will stick to my covenant and promise [of faith and sincere obedience] to You, as to my ability. I seek refuge in You from the evil of what I have done, I acknowledge, to You, your bounties upon me, and I acknowledge, to You, my sin. Thus forgive me, for none forgives sins except You.

Whoever says this as he enters upon evening, then, dies that night, he would enter Paradise; and if one says this as he enters upon morning, then, dies that day, he would enter Paradise.}} (Al-Bukhari)

The servant is always in the blessings of Allah, which necessitate thankfulness, and in sinfulness, which requires seeking forgiveness. Both of these matters are required and essential for the servant at all times, as the servant does not cease to alternate between Allah’s (various) favours and blessings, and does not cease to be in need of repentance and seeking forgiveness.

This is why the Master of the Children of Adam, and the Leader of the Pious, Muhammad, (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) sought forgiveness in all circumstances. He said in an authentic Hadith reported by al-Bukhari:

{{O people repent to your Lord, for verily I seek forgiveness from Allah and repent to him more than seventy times in a day.}} (Bukhari)

It is reported in Saheeh Muslim that he said: {{I seek forgiveness one hundred times in a day.}} (Muslim)

`Abdullah ibn `Umar said: We counted in a single sitting the Messenger of Allah, (sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam), saying one hundred times:

{{My Lord, forgive me and accept my repentance, verily you are Acceptor of Repentance, Oft-Forgiving.}} (Ahmad, Abu Dawood, Ibn Maajah)

This is why seeking forgiveness was legislated at the end of actions. Allah the Exalted said:

{{Those who seek forgiveness before dawn (at late night).}} (Quran, 3:17)

Some of them said: “Give life to your nights by performing Prayer, and when the time of late night comes, concern yourself with seeking forgiveness.”

It is related in the Saheeh that the Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam), when he finished his Prayer, he would seek forgiveness three times and say:

{{O’ my ‘ilãh You are ‘As-Salãm [One free from flaws], and from You comes Salãm [peace, or safety], blessed are Thee O’ haver of glory and kindness.}} (Muslim)

Allah says:

{{And seek forgiveness of Allah. Indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.}} (Quran, 73:20)

(Even) After the Prophet conveyed the Message, fought in the path of Allah with true jihad, and performed what Allah ordered more than anyone else, Allah commanded his Prophet (to perform Istighfaar), as He the Exalted said:

{{When the victory of Allah has come and the conquest, and you see the people entering into the religion of Allah in multitudes, then exalt [Him] with praise of your Lord and ask forgiveness of Him. Indeed, He is ever Accepting of repentance.}} (Quran, 110:1-3)

This is why the religion (Deen) is established with Tawheed and Istighfaar, as Allah the Exalted said:

{{Alif Lam Ra. [This is] a Book whose verses are perfected and then presented in detail from [one who is] Wise and Acquainted. [Through a messenger, saying], “Do not worship except Allah. Indeed, I am to you from Him a warner and a bringer of good tidings,” and [saying], “Seek forgiveness of your Lord and repent to Him, [and] He will let you enjoy a good provision.}} (Quran, 11:1-3)

And Allah says:

{{So take a straight course to Him and seek His forgiveness.}} (Quran, 41:6)

And He says:

{{So know [O Muhammad], that there is no deity except Allah and ask forgiveness for your sin and for the believing men and believing women.}} (Quran, 47:19)

This is why it was it came in a narration: {{The Shaytan said: People are destroyed with sins, and they destroy me with ‘Laa ilaha ill Allah’ and seeking forgiveness.}} (Reported by Ibn Abi Asim and Abu Ya`la, but its chain is a fabrication).

Yonus, `alayhis salam, said:

{{There is no deity except You; exalted are You. Indeed, I have been of the wrongdoers.}} (Quran, 21:87)

The Prophet (sallallahu `alaihi wa sallam), when he would ride his mount, he would praise Allah, then say Allahu Akbar three times, then say:

{{I testify that there is no ‘ilah except You, Glorified are You, I have transgressed upon myself, so forgive me}} (Abu Dawood and at-Tirmidhi, who said it is Hasan Sahih)

Expiation of a gathering with which the gathering is completed is (the supplication):

{{Glorified are You O’ my ‘ilãh and I am in Your praise, I testify that there is no ‘ilah except You, I ask Your forgiveness and repent unto You.}} (Abu Dawood and At-Tirmidhi, who said it is Hasan Sahih)

Allah knows best, and may His blessings and peace be upon [the Prophet] Muhammad.

credits to