Praise be to Allaah.
rejoices over the repentance of His slave even though He is the One Who
helps this penitent to repent, and He is not harmed by people’s sins, no
matter how many they are. This is due to His great mercy towards His
creation, and His great bounty. What we advise our brothers who are adhering
to guidance and seeking to do good is:
1 – Praise
Allaah and thank Him with sincerity for having guided them to the path of
Paradise. They should understand that were it not for Allaah, they would not
have been guided or prayed. As well as praising and thanking Allaah, they
also need to pray to Allaah to make them steadfast in adhering to Islam and
truth, for hearts are in the hand of Allaah and He turns them as He wills.
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to say in
his du’aa’: Yaa muqallib al-quloob thabbit qalbi ala deenaka, Yaa
musarrif al-quloob, asrif qalbi ila taa’atika (O Controller of the
hearts, make my heart adhere firmly to Your religion, O Director of the
hearts, direct my heart to obey You). And we are in greater need of this
du’aa’ than him, (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).
2 – Adhering
to obedience of Allaah by doing obligatory duties and being keen to do more
in order to draw closer to Allaah after doing the obligatory duties, by
doing sunnahs, so as to attain the love of Allaah, for whomever Allaah
loves, He will make him steadfast in following the path and will increase
him in guidance.
narrated that Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The
Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whosoever
shows enmity to someone devoted to Me, I shall be at war with him.
My servant draws not near to Me with anything more loved by Me than the
religious duties I have enjoined upon him, and My servant continues
to draw near to Me with supererogatory works so that
I shall love him. When I love him I am his hearing
with which he hears, his seeing with which he sees, his hand with which
he strikes and his foot with which he walks. Were he to ask
[something] of Me, I would surely give it to him, and
were he to ask Me for refuge, I would surely grant
him it.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari (6137).
3 – Seeking
the pleasure of Allaah and longing to meet Him, and not being distracted by
this world or by its permissible things or pleasures. This righteous
person’s motive to obey Allaah should be sublime and not worldly, and his
aim should be to attain eternal happiness in an abode where no one grows old
or falls sick, which is Paradise.
4 – He should
seek knowledge, starting with memorization of the Book of Allaah, then
studying the Sunnah and reading books of salafi ‘aqeedah, Tawheed and fiqh,
because the more a Muslim learns his religion, the more firmly he will
adhere to it, and one of the greatest causes of backsliding and falling from
the path is ignorance and lack of knowledge of Islam.
5 – He should
be keen to find righteous companions and give up bad companions, especially
those who were with him on his path of negligence before, lest they be a
cause of him going back to his old ways. The Prophet (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him) likened a good friend to the carrier of
musk, for he will either give you some or you will notice a good smell from
him; and he likened the bad friend to the one who works the bellows, for he
will either burn your clothes or you will notice a bad smell from him. This
is how it is with good friends and bad friends. The former will either guide
you towards what is good, or you will see good in him and his attitude and
behaviour, but the bad friend will either guide you towards sin and you will
do it, or he will do it himself and you will not see anything from him but
evil and encouragement to commit evil actions. So you should be keen to seek
good company and avoid bad company.
6 – Beware of
sins, both minor and major, for most fires start due to minor causes and one
sin leads to another. If the heart is darkened and blackened because of sin,
it will no longer be a heart that is alive and recognizes good as good and
evil as evil. So beware, beware of sin. It was narrated from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn
Mas’ood (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allaah
(peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
“Beware of trivial sins, for they will accumulate until they destroy a man.”
And the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) gave
an example, likening them to people who stopped to camp in the wilderness,
and they wanted to prepare some food, so one man went and brought a stick,
and another man brought a stick, until they had gathered a huge pile and lit
a fire, and whatever they put in the pot was cooked as a result.
Ahmad (37/467); classed as hasan by Shu’aub al-Arna’oot and as saheeh by
7 – Beware of
the fitnah (temptation) of wealth. The one whom Allaah has blessed with
wealth should use that wealth to help him obey Allaah and spend it in ways
that please Allaah, such as building mosques, printing books, recording
tapes and distributing pamphlets. He should be keen to perform Hajj and
‘umrah, and beware of going to extremes with regard to permissible things or
spending it on haraam things, for wealth may be a cause of a person being
tempted away from his religious commitment. Allaah indeed spoke the truth
when He said (interpretation of the meaning):
and your children are only a trial, whereas Allaah! With Him is a great
8 – The one
who has been guided must fill his heart with faith, for if the heart is
sound the whole body will be sound, but if it is corrupt the whole body will
be corrupt. So he should strive to read Qur’aan and do a lot of acts of
9 – One of the
reasons why a person backslides may be that he does not have a wife, so he
should be keen to get married and form a family, and he should be keen to
discipline them and teach them. Being single may be a cause of falling into
sin, thinking of desires, staying up late at night a great deal, not living
a serious life and being content with a life of relaxation and laziness.
10 – Finally,
the one who has been recently guided needs to be moderate in performing acts
of worship and be wise in calling people to Islam, for some of those whom
Allaah guides to the path of truth make it hard on themselves with regard to
doing acts of worship, and they are hard on others when they call them and
remind them. Perhaps this is a reason why they backslide. So he should be
keen to be moderate and wise and gentle, and he should strive to consult
people of knowledge and seek their advice, for there is a great deal of good
in that for him.
It was narrated that
‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Amr (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of
Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
“Every deed has a period of enthusiasm, and every
period of enthusiasm is followed by a slackening off. If a person’s
enthusiasm is for my Sunnah, then he has succeeded, but whoever chooses
something else when he slackens off is doomed.”
Narrated by Ibn Hibbaan in his Saheeh (1/187); classed as saheeh by
al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Targheeb, 56.
commentary on this hadeeth and more details on this point in the answer to
question no. 70314.
We ask Allaah
to make us steadfast in adhering to the truth and to make us sincere in word
With regard to
the seeker of knowledge who is just beginning, it is essential to give him
advice with regard to the pursuit of knowledge so that he will be rewarded
for his seeking and so that it will not be a burden on him.
sincere in your intention to seek knowledge. Remember that seeking knowledge
is an act of worship and that Allaah does not accept any act of worship but
that which is done sincerely for His sake. So do not seek knowledge for the
sake of fame, status, wealth, arguing with fools or debating with scholars,
rather seek it sincerely for the sake of Allaah, in obedience to the command
of Allaah and so as to remove ignorance from yourself and others.
patient in seeking knowledge and do not be hasty, for the path is long and
hard, and “whoever works hard at the beginning will reach his target.”
upon what you learn, for knowledge calls for action, but if it meets with no
response, it will move on.
Start with easy issues of knowledge before difficult ones. Do not start with
Fath al-Baari or al-Majmoo’ or al-Muhalla, rather start
with small texts until you are ready for the big ones.
Strive to study with a Shaykh whose religious commitment and knowledge can
be trusted; if that is not possible then study with a seeker of knowledge
who is ahead of you on the path.
a variety of methods of seeking knowledge so that you will not get bored,
such as reading, listening and watching.
to acquire books with commentaries by trustworthy scholars.
not start with controversial books before you have mastered the basics of
evidence from the Qur’aan and saheeh Sunnah.
humble towards Allaah and beware of two dangers: arrogance, and destructive
envy (hasad). The salaf would listen to those who were older than them in
order to learn good manners, and they would listen to those who were younger
than them in order to learn humility, and those who were like them in order
to remove the disease of envy from their hearts.
not be in a hurry to issue fatwas, and strive to (study hard, summarize what
you have read and write down new ideas you learn so that you can revise
them; strive to teach the ignorant things that will benefit them. Allaah
says (interpretation of the meaning): “and spend out of what we have
provided for them” [al-Baqarah 2:3].
See also the
answer to question no. 10324 for information on the etiquette of seeking
With regard to
the books with which one should start after reading the Book of Allaah and
which one should try to memorize, there are many. We have mentioned the most
important of trustworthy books and what is appropriate at every stage of
seeking knowledge, in the answers to question no.
We should also
point out that on our site under the heading of Knowledge and Da’wah/
Knowledge there are many answers from which the seeker of knowledge may
learn about etiquette, rulings and advice.
We ask Allaah
to guide you always and to make it easy for you to acquire beneficial
knowledge and do righteous deeds, for the one whom Allaah guides is truly
guided and the one whom He sends astray can never be guided.