Aoudhubillahi minash shaitaan nirrajeem
Goodness is Only from Allah SWT:
Do not attribute any goodness to you when you work in Allah’s path. Be grateful to Allah SWT because it is He SWT Who used you in His SWT path by His grace and favor towards you. If not for Him SWT, we would never have any strength to work. If Allah SWT grants you righteousness, obedience and steadfastness, do not compliment yourself but know that it is from the mere grace of Allah SWT. Always attribute the excellence and goodness to Allah SWT whenever you get to work for Allah’s cause and never praise yourself. By doing this you will be granted two things: (1) you will be saved from the morbid vanity and (2) by being grateful to Allah SWT, you will be granted steadfastness. It is the promise of Allah SWT that He SWT will grant you abundance if you are grateful to Him SWT.
Sign of Working for Allah’s Pleasure:
Hazrat Ashraf Ali Thanvi (R.a.) says that sometimes people appear to be very vexed for sake of deen and work exuberantly for Allah’s cause but all this vigor they show is either for one’s race or nation or for the love of fame. If a person does for purely Allah’s sake, then it would be in accordance with the shariah, commands of Allah SWT and Allah’s pleasure. He will work with Allah’s pleasure in his mind. A person can be very enthusiastic and vigorous in defense and service of Islam but as the purpose for all this is vanity and fame, he will work as per his wish without distinguishing between good and bad or right and wrong. A person does not abide by Islamic laws as his intention is fame. When you are ingrained with good abilities, when deeni work is extracted from you and when you are made steadfast, be grateful to Allah SWT because it is from His SWT pure grace and generosity you have been offered the divine help for all the above if you really seek Allah’s pleasure. By being grateful you will be saved from vanity and granted steadfastness.
Look into Your Heart
Disclosing one’s righteous deeds as such is not an evil thing and so is hiding any righteous deed not that great. Disclosing one’s righteous deeds is wrong only when you strongly believe that the deed is yours and intent that you get appreciated for it. Revealing the good deed in such a case is very bad. On the other hand, if you ascribe it to the Creator when you reveal your deed, it is not bad but instead it will create a desire, urge and inspiration in others to do that deed. When you do a good deed, if your nafs becomes happy taking its credit, then it is kibr (pride). Alternatively if you think it is from Allah SWT, then it is gratitude. Your heart is your judge and observe how it feels. If you are happy attributing a good deed to your own superiority, it is kibr. If you think it is by grace of Allah SWT, it is gratitude and know that such a deed is accepted by Allah SWT. When a person’s mind is fixed on Allah SWT, his deed will remain insignificant to him. He will be worried the whole time he didn’t fulfill the rights of Allah SWT. A person will think high of himself when his mind is fixed on his self.
Good Deed is Already a Reward:
As much work Allah SWT extracts from us is itself a reward, then why should we yearn for reward for reward? SubhanAllah! When Allah SWT grants you His divine help to carry out righteous deeds and when He SWT mines some deeni work from you in one way or the other, that itself is a reward. When this reward in itself is a great reward, then what other reward you are asking or yearning for? Reward is received for good deeds but here a good deed by itself is a reward. When did it we ever had the ability to any good without Allah’s help? When something disturbing happens to a person, he gets a strange feeling that he is so pious and righteous then why such a thing is happening to him? This means that somewhere he is thinking high of himself for the good deeds he is performing. He thinks himself worthier and that is why he is seeing the tendency of complaint in him. If he thought it is because of the divine help of Allah SWT he is doing a good deed when he is not worthy of any good deed, he won’t have any inclination of complaining.
What Are We Complaining For:
If one believes that the divine help Allah SWT provides is from His grace and is a reward when he is not worthy of it, there won’t be any tendency in him to complaint. Contrarily a person astounds on seeing a calamity befalling him as he thinks it to be not befitting for his high level of piety. He thinks he doesn’t have any evil in him then why does he face such calamities. The fact is if we are to ever search for a salah with concentration from beginning to the end of our prayers performed throughout our lifetime, we won’t even find a single salah. With this poor state, a person thinks himself to be very pious! Say a person is talking to you but he is turning his face away from you, how bad will you feel? Will you ever bother to talk to him again? It is the forbearance and generosity of Allah SWT that He SWT makes you stand before him when your words are for Him SWT in salah but the face of your heart is turned elsewhere. Allah SWT still hears you and this is solely His SWT reward and benevolence. It is merely His SWT grace that He SWT is providing His SWT divine help for good deeds.
Accomplished People Never Boast:
The feeling of pride over one’s accomplishment in itself is a sign that he is devoid of any accomplishment. The accomplished people are never prideful. As these people really attained the accomplishment, they are granted humility and they never boast. If one is truly excellent, he will have in him this quality that he won’t think himself excellent. Contrarily if he is not excellent, he will boast on his excellence. The tree full of fruits remain bowed down while the one with no fruits stands erect. A person with true accomplishment will find in him high humility and modesty. The divine help for righteous deeds is from the grace of Allah SWT. Yearning for prayer and waking up for tahajjud are not your work but it is someone who is waking you up. This will keep going as long as His eyes of generosity is turned towards us. If Allah SWT gets any work from you, see that as His SWT grace because all goodness is solely in His SWT control. So never feel great if you perform any good deed and never look at any sinner with disdain. May Allah SWT grant us all this ability for this is piety. It is not easy to always have our evils before our eyes and to remove the disdain for others from our hearts. We should keep examining our nafs from time to time.
Look Down Your Own Self:
Our Prophet SAW taught this duaa to his ummat, “Allahummajalni fee ayni sagheera wa fi a’yuninnaasi kabeera”. “O Allah! Make me small in my own eyes but great in other people’s eyes”. It is very evil to look at one’s own excellence and feel proud. There are many evils which we are aware of for which we repent but there are many evils and diseases of our heart which we are not aware of and do not repent for. We are not aware of the poisonous and morbid diseases of hearts. We do not consider them as sins and hence we do not take any treatment and repent. These diseases snatch away all the noor of righteous deeds and finish off the spirit of the righteousness. So keep examining yourself in this regard. Worship and do the deeni work but at the same time know that this from the grace of Allah SWT.
Ask Allah SWT and Always Be Grateful to Allah SWT:
Dr.Abdul Hayy (R.a.) used to say that the biggest mujahida (struggle) of our times is to show gratitude to Allah SWT every single time when we receive the blessings related to this world or deen. Be grateful to Allah SWT every single time that it is because of His SWT grace, benevolence and generosity we received the blessings related to world, health or spiritual wellbeing. One do not know how this very gratitude can uproot numerous spiritual diseases. This gratitude need not be verbal but gratitude is to do with the inner condition. If one is fortunate to get this quality, he can be saved from several spiritual diseases. One won’t have jealousy, arrogance, vanity and so many other diseases when he gets this quality. The gratitude will keep our hearts humble. Dr.Abdul Hayy (RA) also advised to keep asking Allah SWT by talking and speaking to Allah SWT. Who will do long and tedious mujahida these days! If one does just these two acts, he will get the kurb (closeness) of Allah SWT. Every single time keep asking Allah SWT and be grateful to Allah SWT. May Allah SWT grant us all the understanding of deen. Ameen