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The Heart and its Enslavement (Uboodiyyah)
  Uboodiyyah - Obsession of the Heart Part 2
Author: Shaikh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah
Source: Al-'Uboodiyyah
Article ID : TZK020004  

Ibn 'Uyayna commented: The greatest favour Allaah has bestowed on His slaves is their knowledge and realisation of "There is no deity but Allaah", and that to the dwellers of Paradise it is like cool water to the people of this world. [Kalimat Al-Ikhlaas by Ibn Rajab pp.52-53]

Ibn Rajab says in enumerating the merits of the kalima: That Paradise is its reward, that its utterance before death will cause one to be admitted to Paradise, it is a refuge from Hell, it causes forgiveness, it is the best of the good deeds; it washes away sins and vices, revives ones's faith when it has faded away and outweighs sins. It traverses all barriers in order to be accepted by Allaah the Almighty. It is the statement whose pronouncer will be accepted by Him, and it is the best proclamation ever uttered by the prophets. It is the best celebration of His praises, the best of deeds, and its multiplication into good deeds is the greatest. It is tantamount to setting slaves free. It is a protection against shaitaan. It is safety amidst the darkness of the grave and the terror of Resurection. It is the motto of the believers when they emerge out of their tombs. The eight doors of Paradise will be accessible to its pronouncer. Further, the people who pronounce it are certain to quit Hell even after they have been cast into it for falling short of observing its obligations. [Kalimat Al- Ikhlaas by Ibn Rajab pp. 54-66]

Hope and Avidity

Mankind differs to a great extent in Al-'Uboodiyah to Allah. Their differences are a quantative disparity in the reality of al-Eemaan. In this regard they are often two types: general, and specific. Consequently, their perception of the divinity of Ar-Rabb is also of two types: vague, and detailed.

Thus, ash-Shirk in this Ummah is more hidden than the crawling of ants.

The Messenger said, "May the worshipper of Ad- Dirham be wretched. May the worshipper of Ad- Deenaar be wretched. May the worshipper of velvet cloth be wretched. May the worshipper of silk cloth be wretched. May he be wretched and disappointed. When such a one is pierced with thorns they cannot be extracted. When he is granted (what he desires), he is pleased; and when he is denied, he is displeased..." [Bukhaaree & Ibn Maajah upon Abu Hurayrah (R)]

The Messenger labelled such a person: The worshipper of ...; mentioned his curse and his condition. Neither did he attain his aim, nor did he escape the harm.

And among them are some who accuse you (O Muhammad ) in the matter of (the distribution of) the alms. If they are given part thereof, they are pleased; but if they are not given thereof, behold! They are enraged! [At-Tawbah ayah 58]

Thus their contentment is for other than Allaah and their rage is for other than Allaah. [These are the hypocrites whom Allaah has mentioned in the rest of the verses. See Zaad Al-Maseer by Imaam Ibn Al-Jawzee, Vol. 3, p.454]

He is therefore the 'Abd of that which he desires: leadership, certain image, or any desire of the soul. The heart is the 'Abd of whatever enslaves it and subdues it. [Al-'Uboodiyah, part 1, by Ibn Taymiyah]

If he renounces anything he will not seek it and will not have avidity for it. His heart will not be in need of it nor will it be in need of the person who would accomplish it for him.

'Umar ibn Al-Khattaab (RA) said, "Avidity is poverty, and renunciation is richness. If one of you renounces anything he will dispense with it."

Al-Khaleel, Ibraheem (AS) said:

. . So seek from Allaah (Alone) your subsistence and worship Him (Alone), and be grateful to Him. To Him (Alone) will be your return. [Al-'Ankaboot ayah 17]

Al-'Abd must have subsistence. He is in need of that. If he seeks his subsistence from Allaah, he becomes an 'Abd for Allaah, but if he seeks it from a created being, he becomes an 'Abd for that created being and in need of him. That is why begging from a created being was forbidden in principle but is allowed for under necessity.

The Messenger said, "One of you would still be begging until he comes on the Day of Resurrection without a bit of flesh on his face." [Bukhaaree, Muslim, an-Nasaa'ee upon 'Abdullaah ibn 'Umar (R)]

The Messenger (sallallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said, "Whoever begged from people while having enough, his begging will be scratches on his face." [at- Tabaraanee upon Jaabir (R)]

The Messenger said, "Begging is forbidden except when there is a great debt, suffering injury, or abasing poverty." [Abu Daawood & al-Bayhaqee upon Anas (R)]

The Messenger said, "It is much better for one of you to take his rope and go to chop wood (for his livelihood) than to beg from people, whether they give him anything or deny him." [Bukhaaree, Ibn Maajah & others upon Az-Zubayr ibn Al-'Awwaam (RA)

The Messenger said, "Whoever dispenses (with anything), Allaah shall enrich him. Whoever seeks chastity, Allaah will make him chaste. Whoever perseveres, Allaah will provide him with patience. No one has been given such a gift better and more ample than patience." [Bukhaaree, Muslim, Maalik, Abu Daawodd, an-Nasaa'ee, at-Tirmidthee upon Abu Sa'eed al-Khudree (RA)]

In Saheeh Muslim and other books, upon 'Awf ibn Maalik it is reported that the Messenger when he accepted his pledge of allegience together with a group of people, whispered to them a secret word, "Do not ask people for anything." Thereafter, when a whip used to drop from the hand of a person of this group, they would not say to anyone, "Hand it to me."

.. So when you finish from your occupation, then stand up for Allaah's worship, and to your Lord (alone) turn (all your intentions and hopes and) your invocations. [Ash-Sharh ayaat 7-8]

The Messenger said to Ibn 'Abbaas (R), "...and if you ever should ask someone for something, then ask Allaah, and if you ever should seek help from someone, then seek it from Allaah" [At-Tirmidthee, Ahmad, & al-Haakim - this hadeeth is Hasan by virtue of another hadeeth.]

He should not request his subsistence except from Allaah and should not refer in his complaint except to Allaah alone as Ya'qoob (AS) said:

...I complain of my grief and sorrow only to Allaah. [Yoosuf ayah 86]

Allaah Ta'aala mentioned in al-Qur'aan nice banishment, gracious forgiueness and fine patience. It was said that: Nice banishment is a banishment without hurting anyone, gracious forgiveness is a forgiving without blaming anyone, and fine patience is a patience without complaining to any created being.

When it was read for Ahmad ibn Hanbal during his sickness that Taawoos used to hate the moaning of a sick man and used to say, "It is a complaint," therafter Ahmad would not groan until he died.

Complaint to the Creator does not contradict fine patience.

...Then a fine patience is most fitting for me...[Yoosuf ayah 83]

...I complain of my grief and sorrow only to Allaah... [Yoosuf ayah 86]

'Umar ibn al-Khattaab (RA) was once reciting in Fajr surat Yoonus, Yoosuf and an-Nahl. When he passed this ayah in his recitation, he cried until his sob was heard in the last rows.

Supplication of Moosaa (A)

"O Allaah! It is for You, all praises and thanks. It is for You the complaint, and it is You Whom we ask for help, from You we seek rescue, on You we rely, and there is no strength for anyone nor power except from You."

The more the ambition of Al-'Abd becomes avid for the graciousness of Allaah and His Mercy to accomplish his need and prevent harm from him, the stronger becomes his 'Uboodiyah to Allaah, and the larger becomes the extent of his freedom from other than Allaah.

Hope must be in Allaah and not in anything created, eg., leadership position, followers, wealth, etc.

...And put your trust in the Living One, Who will never die, and celebrate praises and thanks and sufficient is He to be acquainted with the sins of His 'Ibaad. [ al-Furqaan ayah 58]

Thus, whoever attaches his heart to created beings in order for them to render him victorious or to provide him with sustenance or even to guide him, his heart will submit to them (created beings), and he indulges in Al-'Uboodiyah to them equivalent to the level of his heart's attachment to them even though he, in appearance, is their master who manages matters for them and administers over them. The sane person should look at the realities (the heart of the matter) and not at the appearance of the matter.

Obsession of the Heart

Whoever's body is subdued, enslaved and captivated will not care so long as his heart is reassured and is serene. In this way, it is possible for him to escape.

The 'Uboodiyah of the heart and its captivity form the basis on which good reward or bad punishment will be incurred:

If a Muslim is captivated by a kaafir or is enslaved by a profligate and given no rights, it will not harm him so long as he can fulfill his duties to Allaah.

Whoever is lawfully subdued and fulfills the rights of Allaah and the rights of his master will be rewarded twice. Even if he is forced to pronounce kufr, pronouncing it with his tongue but keeping eemaan in his heart, his utterance will not harm him.

The one whose heart is subdued and becomes an 'Abd for other than Allaah will be harmed by that even if he is a king!

Freedom is the freedom of the heart and al-'Uboodiyah is the 'Uboodiyah of the heart. Similarly well-being is the well-being of the soul. In the Sunnah: Well-being is not how much wealth you have, but it is the well being of the soul.

This is the case when a lawful image has enslaved ones's heart. Whoevers heart is enslaved by an unlawful image will earn a torment more severe than any known torment.

Continuous attachment of the heart without committing al-Faahishah is more harmful for him than it is for the person who commits a sin and repents of it, since after true repentance the attachment and affection vanishes from the heart.

The greatest cause of this affliction is the heart's turning away from Allaah; the heart needs to taste worshipping of Allaah sincerely... someone will not leave a lover except to replace him with someone more beloved or fearing some harm; turn the heart from a corrupt love to a righteous love.

...Thus (did We order) that We might away from him evil and al-Fahshaa.. [Yoosuf ayah 24]

Thus Allaah turns away from his Abd that which could be evil for him from the inclination towards images and attachment to them. He also turns al-Fahshaa away from him when he is sincere to Allaah. Hence, before he tastes the sweetness of al-'Uboodiyah to Allaah and sincerity for Him, he will be forced by his soul to follow its own passion, but once he gets the taste of sincerity and becomes strong in his heart, then his passion will submit to him without any effort.

...Verily, as-Salaat prevents the committing of blatant sins and iIlegal deeds, and the mindfullness of Allaah is greater indeed [Al-Ankaboot ayah 45]

Indeed in as-Salaah there is repulsion of harmful things, i.e. al-Fahshaa and al-Munkar; and there is attainment of a beloved thing, mindfulness of Allaah. The attainment of this beloved thing is greater than the repulsion of the harmful things. Indeed, the mindfulness of Allaah is, by itself, a worship of Allah; and the heart's worship of Allaah is sought for itself whereas the repulsion of evil from the heart is sought for other than itself . Instead, it is needed for something else.

Indeed he succeeds who sanctifies it (his own soul), and he fails who corrupts it (his own soul). [Ash Shams ayaat 9-10]

Indeed, he shall achieve success who sanctifies himself and is mindful of the Name of Allaah and performs Salaat. [Al-Alaa ayaat 14-15]

Tell the believing men to lower their gaze and protect their private parts from sins. That is more sanctifiying for them...[An-Noor ayah 30]

...And had it not been for the Grace of Allaah and His Mercy on you, not one of you would ever have been sanctified... [An-Noor ayah 21]

Thus the sanctification of the soul comprises getting rid of all evils including blatant sins, injustice, shirk, and lying.

Thus he who seeks leadership becomes the slave of his people in reality! Both manifest worship of each other and both have gone away from His true worship. Hence each one who was a slave and obsessed by his passion becomes subdued by the other! Imagine if their mutual help is for an unjust dominion.

Same for one who strives for wealth. Wealth is of two types:

One type is that for which al-'Abd has a need, such as food, drink, housing and marital life. This type shold be asked for from Allaah and should be sought for His pleasure. Thus, this wealth, which a person uses for his needs, is of the same level as his donkey, which he rides, or his mat, on which he sits. Furthermore, it should be regarded on the same level as a water closet, in which he satisfies his need without becoming subdued or dismayed by it.

Irritable (disorientented) when evil touches him, and niggardly when good touches him. [Al-Ma'aarij ayaat 20-21]

The other type of wealth is that which al-'Abd does not need for his necessities. He should not attach his heart to this type of wealth.

Thus the first hadeeth. This person is indeed a slave of those objects. He asks Allaah for them, if granted he is pleased, but if denied he is upset. However the true 'Abd of Allaah is the one who is pleased with what Allaah and His Rasool love and hates what is hated by Allaah and His Rasool and will make allegiance with Awliyaa Allaah and take for enemies the enemies of Allaah.

The Messenger (S) said, "Whoever loves for Allaah, hates for Allaah, gives for Allaah and denies for Allaah has indeed completed al-Eemaan." [Abu Daawood with good isnaad. See Silsilat Al-Ahaadeeth As Saheehah No. 379]

The Messenger (S) said, "The most strong of Al- Eemaan's ties is love in the sake of Allaah and hate in the sake of Allaah." [Hadeeth Hasan extracted by Ahmad and at-Tabaraanee]

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