"….He has not placed any Hardship upon you in Religion…" [TM Qur'an  22:78]

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Qadi 'Iyad   Ash-Shifa of Qadi 'Iyad: Muhammad Messanger of Allah [Kitab Ash-   Tr. Aisha Bewley, PB, 512pp, (Healing by the recognition of the Rights of the Chosen One),Ibn Musa a   

Chapter One of Part Two

The Obligation to believe in the Prophet, obey Him and follow His Sunna

Section 1: The obligation to believe in him

Allah says, "Believe in Allah and His Messenger and the light which He sent down." (64:8) He says, "We sent you as a witness and a bringer of good news
and a warner so that they might believe in Allah and His Messenger." (48:8-9) He says, "Believe in Allah and His Messenger, the unlettered Prophet."
(7:158) Belief in the Prophet Muhammad is therefore a necessary obligation for every individual. Belief is not complete without it and Islam is only valid with it.

Allah says,"Anyone who does not believe in Allah and His Messenger, We have prepared a Searing Blaze for the rejectors." (48:13)

Abu Hurayra said that the Messenger of Allah said, "I was commanded to fight people until they testify that there is no god but Allah and believe in me and what I
have brought. When they do that, their blood and property are protected from me except for a right (they owe). Their reckoning is with Allah." (Muslim and

To believe in the Prophet is to confirm his prophethood and Allah's message to him and to support him in all that he brought and said. Corresponding to the
confirmation of the heart is testimony with the tongue - that he is the Messenger of Allah. The combination of confirmation in the heart with the articulation of that
testimony on the tongue constitutes belief in him and confirmation of him as has been related in a version of the hadith above from 'Abdullah ibn 'Umar, "I was
commanded to fight people until they testify that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah." (Muslim and al-Bukhari)

It is clearer in another hadith in which Jibril is reported as saying, "Tell me about Islam." The Prophet said, "It is that you testify that there is no god but Allah and that
Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah," and he went on to mention the pillars of Islam. Then he asked him about belief and he said, "It is that you believe in Allah,
His angels, His Books and His Messengers." (Muslim)

He confirmed that belief in the Prophet implies acceptance in the heart while Islam demands articulation by the tongue. Together they lead to the complete
praiseworthy state. The blameworthy state consists of testimony on the tongue without confirmation by the heart. That is hypocrisy.

Allah says, "When the hypocrites come to you, they say, 'We testify that you are the Messenger of Allah,' and Allah knows that you are His Messenger and
Allah testifies that the hypocrites are liars." (63:1) i.e. they lie in respect of what they say regarding what they believe and confirm. They do not really believe it. If
their consciousness does not confirm their words, it will not benefit them to say with their tongues what is not in their hearts. They fall short of belief. They will not
benefit by its jurisdiction in the Next World since they do not possess faith. They will join the unbelievers in the lowest level of the Fire. However, because they give
verbal testimony, they are still judged as Muslims as far as the jurisdiction of this world is concerned, by Muslim Imams and judges who can only give judgment
according to people's outward display of Islam since there is no way one human being can uncover the secrets of another. They are not commanded to investigate
such people and the Prophet forbade passing judgement on them as unbelievers and censured doing so, saying, "Why did you not split open his heart?" (Muslim and
al-Bukhari) The difference between what is affirmed with the tongue and true belief is clarified by the hadith of Jibril - verbal testimony is part of Islam and
confirmation with the heart is part of belief.

There are other states which lie between these two. One such state is when someone confirms with his heart and then dies before he has had time to testify with his
tongue. There is some disagreement about the states of such a person. Some make it a precondition that he should have completed his faith by verbal testimony.
Others think that he is a believer who will necessarily go to the Garden according to the words of the Prophet, "Whoever has an atom's weight of belief in his heart
must come out of the Fire."(Muslim and al-Bukhari) The Prophet only mentioned what was in the heart. A person who believes in his heart is neither a rebel nor
negligent by not pronouncing it. This is the sound opinion regarding this matter.

The second case concerns someone who believes in his heart and then waits a long time to testify to it even though he knows that it is necessary to do so. He does
not speak of it or testify to it even once in his entire life. There are similar disagreements about such a person. It is said that he is a believer because he confirmed it
inwardly. However because testimony is part of required action, he is a rebel for not doing so but will not be in the Fire forever. It is also said that he is not really a
believer until he accompanies his belief with verbal testimony since testimony is entering into a contract and a requirement of belief. It is directly connected to belief.
Delayed confirmation is only completed by verbal testimony. This is the sounder opinion.

This is a small matter which, however, has been the source of extensive discussion on the nature of Islam and Belief and related subjects, and increase and decrease
in them. Is the reward for simple confirmation denied when there is no valid statement? Is it dependant on having action added to it? Or might it appear solely
through its different qualities and various states - strong certainty, resolute belief, clear recognition, a constant state and the presence of the heart?

To say more on this is beyond the goal of this book. We have said enough for our purposes here, Allah willing.

Section 2: The obligation to obey him

As for the obligation to obey the Prophet, belief in him demands it. Confirmation of what he brought requires obedience to him because that is part of what he
brought. Allah says, "O you who believe, obey Allah and His Messenger..." (8:20) "Say: obey Allah and obey the Messenger..." (24:54) He says, "Obey
Allah and the Messenger and perhaps you will be shown mercy." (3:132) "If you obey him, you will be guided..." (24:54) "Whoever obeys the Messenger
has obeyed Allah..." (4:79) "Take what the Messenger brings you and leave what he forbids you..." (59:7) "Whoever obeys Allah and the Messenger is
with those whom Allah has blessed." (4:68) "We did not send any Messenger but for him to be obeyed by the permission of Allah." (4:63)

He made obeying His Messenger tantamount to obeying Himself, and He placed obedience to Himself alongside obedience to His Messenger. Allah promises that
doing this will result in an abundant reward and threatens a severe punishment for opposing it. He made it obligatory to obey the things that the Prophet commanded
and to avoid those he prohibited.

The commentators and Imams have said that obeying the Messenger means to cling to his sunna and submit to what he brought. They said that Allah did not send a
Messenger without obliging those to whom he was sent to obey him and that obeying the Messenger in his sunna is equivalent to obeying Allah in His obligations.
Sahl at-Tustari was asked about the Shari'a of Islam and he quoted, "Take what the Messenger brings you." (59:7)

As-Samarqandi said that it was said: obey Allah in His obligations and the Messenger in his sunna. It is also said: obey Allah regarding what He makes forbidden for
you and obey the Messenger regarding what he conveys to you. It is said that it means to obey Allah by testifying that He is the Lord and to obey the Prophet by
testifying to his prophethood.

Abu Salama ibn 'Abdu'r-Rahman heard Abu Hurayra say that the Messenger of Allah said, "Whoever obeys me has obeyed Allah. Whoever rebels against me has
rebelled against Allah. Whoever obeys my Amir has obeyed me. Whoever rebels against my Amir has disobeyed me." (Muslim and al-Bukhari)

Obeying the Messenger is part of obeying Allah since Allah commands that he be obeyed. True obedience is obedience to Allah's command and therefore
obedience to His Prophet.

Allah talks about the unbelievers in the depths of the Fire saying, "On the day when their faces are turned over in the Fire, they will say, 'Would that we had
obeyed Allah and that we had obeyed the Messenger.' " (33:66) They will wish they had obeyed when the wish will not profit them.

The Prophet said, "When I forbid you to do something, avoid it. When I command you to do something, then do it as much as you are able." (Muslim and

In the hadith of Abu Hurayra we find that the Prophet said, "All of my community will enter the Garden except for those who refuse to." They asked, "Messenger of
Allah, who will refuse?" He replied, "Whoever obeys me will enter the Garden. Whoever rebels against me has refused." (al-Hakim)

In another sound hadith the Prophet said, "My likeness and the likeness of what Allah has sent me with is like a man who comes to a people and says, 'O people, I
have seen the army with my own eyes and I am a sincere warner, so save yourselves!' One group of his people obey him and they travel at the beginning of the night,
go at their leisure and are saved. Another group reject him and remain where they are and the army arrives in the morning and wipes them out. Such is the likeness of
those who obey me and follow what I bring and the likeness of those who rebel against me and deny what I bring." (Al-Bukhari)

In a similar hadith we find, "It is like someone who builds a house and lays out a fine feast in it and sends out a summoner. Whoever answers the summoner enters
the house and eats from the feast. Whoever does not answer the summoner does not enter the house and eat from the feast." (Muslim and al-Bukhari)

The house is the Garden and the summoner is Muhammad, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. Whoever obeys Muhammad has obeyed Allah. Whoever
rebels against the Messenger of Allah has rebelled against Allah. Muhammad distinguishes between people.

Section 3: The obligation to follow him and obey his Sunna

As for the obligation to follow him and obey his sunna and follow his guidance, Allah says, "Say: if you love Allah, follow me and He will love you and forgive
you your wrong actions." (3:31) "Believe in Allah and His Messenger, the unlettered Prophet who believes in Allah and His words. Follow him, perhaps
you will be guided." (7:157) "No, by your Lord, they will not believe until they ask you to judge between them in what they disagree about and then they
shall find in themselves no impediment touching your verdict, but shall surrender in full submission." (4:64) i.e. obey your judgement.

Allah also says, "You have a good model in the Messenger of Allah for one who hopes for Allah and the Last Day." (33:21) Muhammad ibn 'Ali at-Tirmidhi
said, "To take the Messenger as a model means to emulate him, follow his sunna and abandon opposition to him in either word or action." Several commentators
said words to that effect.

It is said that this was intended as a criticism of those who fail to follow him. Sahl said that the ayat from the Fatiha (Sura 1), "The path of those whom You have
blessed", means to follow the sunna. Allah commands this and promises they will be guided by following him by reason of the fact that Allah has sent him with the
guidance and the deen of the truth to purify them, teach them the Book and the Wisdom, and to guide them to a straight path.

In the first ayat mentioned, Allah promises His love and forgiveness to those who follow the Prophet and prefer him to their own passions and inclinations.
Soundness of belief is based on submission to the Prophet and satisfaction with his judgement and abandoning opposition to him.

It is related from al-Hasan al-Basri that some people said, "Messenger of Allah, we love Allah," so Allah revealed, "Say: if you love Allah, follow me and
Allah will love you." (3:31) It is related that this verse was revealed about Ka'b ibn Ashraf and others. They said, "We are the sons of Allah and His beloveds,"
(5:20) and "We are stronger in love for Allah," (2:165) so Allah revealed the ayat.

Az-Zajjaj says that the meaning of, "Say: if you love Allah", is if you desire to obey Him, then do what He has commanded you to do since the love of the slave for
Allah and the Messenger lies in obeying both of them and being happy with what they command. Allah's love for them is His pardon to them and His blessing them
with His mercy. It is said that love from Allah manifests itself in protection and success. Love on the part of the slaves manifests itself in obedience.

A poet (Al-Mahmud ibn al-Hasan al-Warraq) has said:

Do you rebel against God when you claim to love Him?
By my life, this is an extraordinary example!

If your love had been true, then you would have obeyed Him.
The lover obeys the one he loves.

It is said that the slave's love for Allah is to exalt Him and be in awe of Him, and the love of Allah for him is His mercy to him and His beautiful concern for him. It
can also mean praise. Al-Qushayri said, "When love means mercy, desire and praise, it is one of the attributes of Allah's essence." More will be said concerning the
slave loving something else by the power of Allah.

Al-'Irbad ibn Sariyya relayed the warning of the Prophet, "You must follow my sunna and the sunna of the Rightly-Guided Khalifs. Cling to it fiercely and beware of
new things. These new things are innovations, and every innovation is misguidance." Jabir added, "Every misguidance is in the Fire." (Muslim)

Abu Rafi' reported that the Prophet said, "Do not let any of you be found reclining on his bed when he hears an injunction from me which is from among those things
which I myself commanded or forbade so that he says, 'I do not know. We only follow what we find in the Book of Allah.'" (Ash-Shafi'i in al-Umm, Abu Dawud,
at-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah. A sound hadith)

'A'isha said, "The Messenger of Allah did something as an example in order to make things easier for people but some people still refrained from doing it. When the
Prophet heard about that, he praised Allah and said, 'What do you think of people who refrain from anything that I myself do? By Allah, I am the greatest of them in
knowledge of Allah and the strongest of them in fear of Allah.'" (Muslim and al-Bukhari)

It is related that the Prophet said, "The Qur'an is hard and difficult for anyone who hates it. It is judgement. Whoever clings to what I say and understands it and
retains it, then it will be like the Qur'an for him. Whoever considers the Qur'an and what I say unimportant and neglects it loses this world and the Next. My
community is commanded to take my words and obey my command and follow my sunna. Whoever is pleased with my words is pleased with the Qur'an. Allah
says, 'Take what the Messenger brings you.'" (59:7) (Abu'sh-Shaykh, ad-Daylami and Abu Nu'aym from al-Hakam ibn 'Umayr)

The Prophet said, "Whoever follows me is of me and whoever wants to abandon my sunna is not of me."

Abu Hurayra said that the Prophet said, "The best speech is the Book of Allah and the best guidance is the guidance of Muhammad. The worst matters are

It is related from 'Abdullah ibn 'Amr ibn al-'As that the Prophet said, "There are three types of knowledge - any other knowledge is superfluous - a precise ayat, an
established sunna or a just share (of inheritance)." (Abu Dawud and Ibn Majah)

Al-Hasan ibn al-Hasan said that the Prophet said, "Doing a little of something which is a sunna is better than doing a lot of something which is an innovation."

The Prophet said, "Allah will bring a man into the Garden by the fact that he clings to my sunna."

Abu Hurayra said that the Prophet said, "The one who clings to my sunna when the community is corrupt will have the reward of a hundred martyrs." (at-Tabarani)

The Prophet said, "The Banu Isra'il split into about seventy-two sects. My community will split into seventy-three. All of them will be in the Fire except for one."
They asked, "Who are they, Messenger of Allah?" He replied, "Those who base themselves on what I and my Companions are doing today." (at-Tirmidhi)

Anas reported that the Prophet said, "Whoever brings the sunna to life has brought me to life. Whoever brings me to life will be with me in the Garden." (al-Isbahani)

'Amr ibn 'Awf al-Muzani said that the Prophet told Bilal ibn al-Harith, "Whoever brings to life any of my sunna which has died after me will have the reward of all
those who act by it without decreasing their reward in any way. Whoever introduces a misguiding innovation which does not please Allah and His Messenger will
have the like of all those who act by it without that decreasing their burden." (At-Tirmidhi. Ibn Majah considers it hasan.)

Section 4: What is related from the Salaf and the Imams about following his Sunna, taking his guidance and the Sira

A man from Khalid ibn Asid's family asked 'Abdullah ibn 'Umar, "Abu 'Abdu'r-Rahman! We find the Fear Prayer and the prayer at home in the Qur'an, but we do
not find the travelling prayer." Ibn 'Umar said, "My nephew, Allah sent Muhammad to us when we did not know anything. We do as we saw him doing."

'Umar ibn 'Abdu'l-'Aziz said, "The Messenger of Allah made a Sunna and the people in command after him made sunnas. To adopt them is to confirm the Book of
Allah and to act on them is to obey Allah and strengthen the deen of Allah. It is not for anyone to change the Sunna or alter it or to look into the opinion of those who
oppose it. Whoever follows it is guided. Whoever seeks help by it will have victory. Whoever opposes it and follows other than the path of the believers, Allah will
entrust him to what he turns to and will roast him in Jahannam, which is a bad ending." (See Qur'an 4:115)

Al-Hasan ibn Abi'l-Hasan said, "A little action following a sunna is better than a lot of action following an innovation."

Ibn Shihab said, "It has reached us that some of the people of knowledge said, 'Holding fast to the sunna is salvation.' "

'Umar ibn al-Khattab wrote to his governors telling them to learn the Sunna, the shares of inheritance and the dialects, saying, "People will try to argue with you (i.e.
by using the Qur'an), so overcome them with the Sunna. The people of the Sunna have the greatest knowledge of the Book of Allah."

When 'Umar prayed two rak'ats at Dhu'l-Hulayfa, he said, "I do as I saw the Messenger of Allah doing." (Dhu'l-Hulayfa is the miqat for the people of Madina on
their way to Hajj.)

When 'Ali joined the hajj and 'umra together, 'Uthman said to him, "Why do you do this, when you know that I have forbidden the people to do it?" He replied, "I do
not abandon a sunna of the Messenger of Allah for the statement of anyone."

'Ali said, "I am not a Prophet nor have I received revelation, but I act according to the Book of Allah and the Sunna of the Prophet Muhammad as much as I can."

Ibn Mas'ud used to say, "Doing a little of the Sunna is better than striving hard in innovation."

Ibn 'Umar said, "The travelling prayer is two rak'ats. Whoever opposes the Sunna is an unbeliever."

Ubayy ibn Ka'b said, "You must follow the path of Allah and the Sunna. There is no slave who is on the path of Allah and the Sunna, remembering Allah, his eyes
overflowing out of fear of his Lord, but that Allah will never punish him. There is no slave on the earth who is on the path of Allah and the Sunna, remembering Allah,
his skin trembling out of fear of Allah, but that he is like a tree whose leaves are dry. In the same way that a tree loses its leaves when a strong wind hits it, his errors
fall from him as the leaves are shaken from the tree. A minimal course in the path of Allah and the Sunna is better than striving hard in a path contrary to the path of
Allah and the sunna and consenting to innovation. See that your actions - whether they are striving or minimal - are on the path of the Prophets and their sunna."

One of the governors of 'Umar ibn 'Abdu'l-'Aziz wrote to him about the bad conditions and the great number of thieves in his territory. Should he arrest them on
mere suspicion or only with clear proof in accordance with the Sunna? 'Umar wrote to him, "Arrest them only with clear proof in accordance with the Sunna. If the
truth does not put them right, Allah will not put them right."

'Ata' said that the words of Allah, "If you have a dispute about something, refer it back to Allah and the Messenger" (4:58) means that you should consult the
Book of Allah and the Sunna of the Messenger of Allah in cases of disagreement.

Ash-Shafi'i said, "The Sunna of the Messenger of Allah consists only in following it."

When 'Umar looked at the Black Stone, he said, "You are a stone and can neither help nor harm. If I had not seen the Messenger of Allah kiss you, I would not
have kissed you." Then he kissed it.

'Abdullah ibn 'Umar was seen making his she-camel turn round in a particular place and was asked why. He said,"I don't know. I once saw the Messenger of Allah
doing it, so I do it."

Abu 'Uthman al-Hiri said, "Whoever gives the Sunna authority over himself in word and deed speaks with wisdom. Whoever gives passion authority over himself
speaks by innovation."

Sahl at-Tustari said, "The bases of our school are three: following the Prophet in character and actions, eating from what is lawful, and making our intention sincere in
all actions."

It has come that Allah's words, "He raises up the right action," (35:10) refer to following the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace.

It is related that Ahmad ibn Hanbal said, "One day I was with a group who stripped off all their clothes and went into the water. I applied the hadith, 'Whoever
believes in Allah and the Last Day should only enter the baths with a wrapper.' I did not strip. That night I dreamt that someone said to me, 'O Ahmad, Allah has
forgiven you because of your application of the sunna and He has made you an Imam who will be followed.' I said, 'Who are you?' He replied, 'Jibril.' "

Section 5: The danger of opposing his command

Opposing his command and changing his sunna is misguidance and innovation. It is threatened by Allah with utter bereftness and punishment.

Allah says, "Those who oppose his command should beware of a testing trial coming to them or a painful punishment striking them," (24:63) and "But if
anyone splits with the Messenger after the guidance has become clear to him, and follows other than the path of the believers, We will hand him over to
whatever he has turned to." (4:115)

Abu Hurayra said that once the Messenger of Allah went to visit some graves and, while there, described his community, saying, "Some men will be driven away
from my Basin as a stray camel is driven off. I will call to them, 'Come here! Come here!' It will be said, 'They made changes after you.' Then I will say, 'Get away!
Get away!'" (Muslim, Malik, Abu Dawud and an-Nasa'i)

Anas related that the Prophet said, "Anyone who dislikes my sunna is not of me." (Muslim and al-Bukhari)

The Prophet said, "Anyone who adds something to my commands which is not part of them is a renegade." (Muslim and al-Bukhari)

Ibn Abi Rafi' related from his father that the Prophet said, "Do not let any of you be found reclining on his bed when he hears an injunction from me which is from
among those things which I myself have commanded or forbidden so that he says, 'I do not know. We only follow what we find in the Book of Allah.'" He added a
version of the hadith from al-Miqdam, "What the Messenger of Allah makes unlawful is like what Allah makes unlawful." (Abu Dawud, at-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah)

Once when some writing on a shoulder-blade was brought to him, the Prophet said, "People are stupid enough to dislike what their Prophet has brought them,
preferring someone else to their Prophet or another book to their book." So it was revealed, "Or is it not enough for them that We sent down the Book on them
which is recited to them?" (29:51) (Abu Dawud, ad-Darimi, Ibn Jarir and others)

The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Those who go to extremes in speech will be destroyed." (Muslim via Ibn Mas'ud)

Abu Bakr as-Siddiq said, "I have not omitted doing anything that the Messenger of Allah used to do. I feared that I would deviate if I left out any of his commands."

Ash-Shifa' by Qadi 'Iyad

Chapter Two of Part Two

On the Necessity of Loving the Prophet


Section 1: Concerning the necessity of loving him

Allah says, "Say: 'If your fathers or your sons or your brothers or your wives or your tribe, or any wealth you have acquired, or any business you fear may slump, or any dwelling-places which please you, are dearer to you than Allah and His Messenger and fighting hard in jihad in His Way, then wait until Allah brings about His command.'" (9:25)

This is enough encouragement, advice, proof and indication of the necessity of loving him and is sufficient to show that this duty is an immensely important obligation which is the Prophet's due. Allah censures those whose property, families and children are dearer to them than Allah and His Messenger. He threatens them by adding, "Wait until Allah brings about His command." At the end of the verse He considers such people as having done wrong and informs them they are among those who are astray and not guided by Allah.

Anas reported that the Messenger of Allah said, "None of you will believe until I am more beloved to him than his children, his father and all people." (al-Bukhari, Muslim & an-Nasa'i) There is something similar from Abu Hurayra.

Anas reported that the Prophet said, "There are three things which cause anyone who takes refuge in them to experience the sweetness of belief - that Allah and His Messenger are more beloved to him than anything else; that he loves a man only for Allah; and that he dislikes the thought of reverting to disbelief as much as he would dislike being cast into the Fire." (al-Bukhari & Muslim))

'Umar ibn al-Khattab told the Prophet, "I love you more than anything except my soul which is between my two sides." The Prophet replied, "None of you will believe until I am dearer to him than his own soul." 'Umar said, "By the One who sent down the Book on you, I love you more than my soul which is between my two sides." The Prophet said, "'Umar, now you have it!" (al-Bukhari)

Sahl said, "Whoever does not think that the Messenger is his master in all states or think that he is under the dominion of the Prophet does not taste the sweetness of his Sunna because the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, 'None of you will believe until I am dearer to him than himself.'"


Section 2: On the reward for loving the Prophet

Anas said that a man came to the Prophet and asked, "When will the Last Hour come, Messenger of Allah?" , "What have you prepared for it?" he asked? He replied, "I have not prepared a lot of prayer or fasting or charity for it, but I love Allah and His Messenger." The Prophet said, "You will be with the one you love." (al-Bukhari)

Safwan ibn Qudama said, "I emigrated to the Prophet and went to him and said, 'Messenger of Allah, give me your hand.' So he gave me his hand. I said, 'Messenger of Allah, I love you.' He said, 'A man is with the one he loves.'" (at-Tirmidhi and an-Nasa'i) 'Abdullah ibn Mas'ud, Abu Musa al-Ash'ari and Anas related this statement from the Prophet, and Abu Dharr also has something to the same effect.

'Ali said that the Prophet took Hasan and Husayn by the hand and said, "Whoever loves me and loves these two and their father and mother will have the same degree as me on the Day of Rising." (at-Tirmidhi)

It is related that a man came to the Prophet and said, "Messenger of Allah, I love you more than my family and my possessions. I remember you and I cannot wait until I can come and look at you. I remember that I will die and you will die and I know that when you enter the Garden, you will be raised up with the Prophets. When I enter it, I will not see you." Allah then revealed, "Whoever obeys Allah and the Messenger, will be with those whom Allah has blessed: the Prophets, the men of truth, the martyrs and the righteous. And such people are the best of company!" (4:68) The Prophet called the man and recited the verses to him. (at-Tabarani)

In another hadith we find, "A man was with the Prophet, looking at him without turning away. The Prophet asked, "What is wrong with you?" He replied, "My father and mother be your ransom! I enjoy looking at you. On the Day of Rising, Allah will raise you up because of His high estimation of you!" Allah then sent down the verse mentioned above.

In the hadith of Anas, the Prophet said, "Whoever loves me will be with me in the Garden." (al-Isfahani)


Section 3: On what is related from the Salaf and the Imams about their love for the Prophet and their yearning for him

Abu Hurayra said that the Messenger of Allah said, "Those in my community with the strongest love for me are the people who will come after me. Some of them would give their family and wealth to have seen me." (Muslim and al-Bukhari) There is something similar from Abu Dharr.

The hadith of 'Umar, "I love you more than myself," has already been cited. There are similar things from other Companions.

'Amr ibn al-'As said, "There is no one I love better than the Messenger of Allah."

'Abda bint Khalid ibn Ma'dan said, "Khalid never went to bed without remembering how he yearned for the Messenger of Allah and his Companions among the Muhajirun and Ansar, and he would name them. He said, 'They are my root and branch, and my heart longs for them. I have yearned for them a long time. My Lord, hasten my being taken to You!'"

It is related that Abu Bakr said to the Prophet, "By the One who sent you with the truth, I would be happier if Abu Talib [the Prophet's uncle] were to become Muslim than if Abu Quhayfa [his own father] were to. That is because the Islam of Abu Talib would delight you more." 'Umar ibn al-Khattab told al-'Abbas, "Your becoming a Muslim is dearer to me than al-Khattab becoming a Muslim because it is dearer to the Messenger of Allah."

Ibn Ishaq said that the father, brother and husband of one of the women of the Ansar were killed in the Battle of Uhud fighting for the Messenger of Allah. She asked, "What has happened to the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace?" They said, "He is as well as you would like, praise be to Allah!" She said, "Show him to me so I can look at him." When she saw him, she said, "Every affliction is as nothing now that you are safe."

'Ali ibn Abi Talib was asked, "How was your love for the Messenger of Allah?" He replied, "By Allah, we loved him more than our wealth, our sons, our fathers and our mothers, and more than cold water in a time of great thirst."

Zayd ibn Aslam said, 'Umar went out at night to observe the people and saw a lamp in a house where an old woman was teasing some wool, saying:

      "The prayer of the good be upon Muhammad, may the blessed bless him!

       I was standing in tears before dawn. If only I knew,when death gives us different forms,

       Whether the Abode will join me to my beloved!"

She meant the Prophet. 'Umar sat down in tears.

It is related that once 'Abdullah ibn 'Umar's foot went numb. He was told, "Remember the most beloved of people to you and it will go away!" He shouted, "O Muhammad!" and the feeling returned.

When Bilal was near death, his wife called out, "O sorrow!" Bilal said, "What joy! I will meet those I love, Muhammad and his party!"

It is related that a woman said to 'A'isha, "Show me the grave of the Messenger of Allah." She showed it to her and the woman wept until she died.

When the Makkans drove Zayd ibn ad-Dathima out of the Haram to kill him, Abu Sufyan ibn Harb said to him, "I ask you by Allah, Zayd, don't you wish that Muhammad were with us now to take your place so that we could cut off his head, and you were with your family?" Zayd said, "By Allah, I would not wish Muhammad to be now in a place where even a thorn could hurt him if that was the condition for my being with my family!" Abu Sufyan remarked, "I have not seen any people who love anyone the way the Companions of Muhammad love Muhammad."

Ibn 'Abbas said, "When a woman came to the Prophet (i.e. from Makka to Madina), he made her take an oath that she had not left because of her husband's wrath or desire for a new land and that she had only left out of love for Allah and His Messenger."

Ibn 'Umar stood over Ibn az-Zubayr after he had been killed and asked for forgiveness for him and said, "By Allah, according to what I know you were someone who fasted and prayed and loved Allah and His Messenger."


Section 4: The signs of love of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace

Know that someone who loves a person prefers them and prefers what they like. Otherwise, he is a pretender, insincere in his love.

Someone who has true love of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, will manifest the following signs.

1) The first sign is that he will emulate him, apply his Sunna, follow his words and deeds, obey his commands and avoid his prohibitions and take on his adab in ease and hardship, joy and despair. Allah testifies to that, "Say: if you love Allah, then follow me and Allah will love you." (3:31)

2) He will prefer what the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, has laid down as law and encouraged, over his own passions and appetites. Allah said, "Those who were already settled in the abode, and in belief, before they came, love those who have emigrated to them and do not find in their breasts any need for what they have been given and prefer them to themselves even if they themselves are in want." (59:9)

3) His anger against people will only be for the sake of the pleasure of Allah. Anas ibn Malik said, "The Messenger of Allah said to me, 'My son, if you can be without any grudge in your heart against anyone in the morning and evening, be like that.' Then he added, 'My son, that is part of my Sunna. Whoever gives life to my sunna has loved me and whoever loves me is with me in the Garden.'" (at-Tirmidhi)

Anyone who possesses this particular quality has perfect love for Allah and His Messenger. Anyone slightly lacking in it is imperfect in his love, while not entirely devoid of it. The proof of this is in what the Prophet said about the man who was given the punishment for drinking. A man there cursed him and the Prophet said, "Do not curse him. He loves Allah and His Messenger." (al-Bayhaqi)

4) Another of the signs of love for the Prophet is to mention him often. Whoever loves something mentions it a lot.

5) Another is great yearning to meet him. Every lover yearns for their beloved.

When the Ash'arite clan came to Madina, they chanted, "Tomorrow we will meet those we love, Muhammad and his Companions!"

6) One of its signs is that as well as mentioning him often, someone who loves him will exalt and respect him when he mentions him and display humility and abasement when he hears his name. Ishaq at-Tujibi said, "Whenever the Companions of the Prophet heard his name after he died, they were humble, their skins trembled and they wept. It was the same with many of the Followers. Some of them act like that out of love and yearning for him, others out of respect and esteem."

7) Another sign is love for those who love the Prophet and the people of his house and his Companions, both of the Muhajirun and Ansar, for his sake. Such a person will also be hostile to those who hate them and curse them. Whoever loves anyone, loves those he loves.

The Prophet said about al-Hasan and al-Husayn, "O Allah, I love them, so love them." In al-Hasan's variant, "O Allah, I love him, so love the one who loves him." He also said, "Whoever loves them loves me. Whoever loves me loves Allah. Whoever hates them hates me. Whoever hates me hates Allah." (al-Bukhari)

He said, "Allah! Allah! My Companions! Do not make them targets after me! Whoever loves them loves them by loving me. Whoever hates them hates them by hating me. Whoever does something hurtful to them does something hurtful to me. Whoever does something hurtful to me does something hurtful to Allah. Whoever does something hurtful to Allah is about to be seized." (at-Tirmidhi)

He said about Fatima, "She is a part of me. Whoever hates her hates me." (al-Bukhari)

He said to 'A'isha about Usama ibn Zayd, "Love him for I love him." (at-Tirmidhi)

He said, "The sign of true faith is love for the Ansar and the sign of hypocrisy is hatred for them." (al-Bukhari and Muslim)

In a hadith related by Ibn 'Umar we find, "Whoever loves the Arabs, loves them because he loves me. Whoever hates them hates them because he hates me." In reality, whoever loves someone loves everything he loves. This was certainly the case with the Salaf, even regarding permitted things and the appetites of the self.

Anas once saw the Prophet reaching for the pumpkin in the plate. He said, "I have loved pumpkin from that day."

Al-Hasan ibn 'Ali, 'Abdullah ibn 'Abbas and Ibn Ja'far came to Salma [a servant of the Prophet] and asked her to prepare some food for them which the Messenger of Allah liked. Ibn 'Umar began to wear tanned sandals dyed yellow when he saw the Prophet wearing ones like that.

8) Another sign is hatred for anyone who hates Allah and His Messenger, having enmity towards all who have enmity towards him, avoidance of all those who oppose his Sunna and introduce innovations into his Deen, and finding every matter contrary to his Shari'a burdensome. Allah says, "You will not find any people who believe in Allah and the Last Day who having love for anyone who opposes Allah and His Messenger." (58:22)

His Companions killed their loved ones and fought their fathers and sons to gain the pleasure of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. 'Abdullah ibn 'Abdullah ibn Ubayy said to him, "If you had wanted, I would have brought you his head (his father's)."

9) Another sign of it is love for the Qur'an which the Prophet brought, by which he guided and was guided, and whose character he took on so that 'A'isha said, "His character was the Qur'an." Part of love for the Qur'an is its recitation and acting by it and understanding it, and loving his sunna and keeping within its limits.

Sahl ibn 'Abdullah said, "The sign of the love of Allah is love of the Qur'an. The sign of love of the Qur'an is love of the Prophet. The sign of love of the Prophet is love of the Sunna. The sign of love of the Sunna is love of the Next World. The sign of love of the Next World is hatred for this world. The sign of hatred for this world is that you do not store up any of it except for provision and what you need to arrive safely in the Next World."

Ibn Mas'ud said, "No one needs to ask himself about anything except the Qur'an. If he loves the Qur'an, he loves Allah and His Messenger."

10) One of the signs of love for the Prophet is having compassion for his community, giving them good counsel, striving for their best interests and removing what is harmful from them just as the Prophet was "compassionate, merciful to the believers." (9:128)

11) One of the signs of perfect love is that the one who aspires to it does without in this world and prefers poverty.

The Prophet said to Abu Sa'id al-Khudri, "Poverty for those among you who love me comes quicker than a flood from the top of the mountain to the bottom." (at-Tirmidhi)

In a hadith from 'Abdullah b. Mughaffal, a man said to the Prophet, "O Messenger of Allah, I love you." He said, "Take care what you say!" He said, "By Allah, I love you" three times. He said, "If you love me, then prepare for poverty quickly." There is a similar hadith from Abu Sa'id al-Khudri.


Section 5: On the meaning and reality of love for the Prophet

People disagree about what constitutes love of Allah and the Prophet. They have many things to say about it, but in reality, they are referring to different states.

Sufyan said, "Love consists of following the Messenger of Allah." It was as if he were thinking of the words of Allah, "Say: if you love Allah, then follow me." (3:31)

One of the scholars said, "Love of the Messenger is to believe in his victory, protect his Sunna, obey it and to fear being in opposition to him."

One of the scholars said, "Love is constant remembrance of the beloved."

Another said, "It is preferring the beloved."

Another said, "Love is yearning for the beloved."

One of the scholars said, "Love is the heart following the will of its master, loving what he loves and hating what he hates."

Another said, "Love is the heart's inclination to be in harmony with the beloved."

Most of these statements indicate the fruits of love rather than its reality. The reality of love is to incline to what one finds agreeable and harmonious, either:

(1) by the pleasure in its perfection – like love of beautiful forms, melodious sounds, delicious foods and drink to which one naturally inclines because they are agreeable;

(2) or by pleasure in the perfection of its noble inner qualities which is sensed by the intellect and heart–- like love for the righteous, scholars and people of correct behaviour whose marvellous lives and good actions have been related. Man's nature inclines to intense love for these sorts of things to the point of fanaticism. Such partisanship of one group against another and sectarianism within a nation can result in homelands being abandoned, inviolable things being dishonoured, and lives lost;

(3) or someone can love something because he finds it agreeable by reason of gaining benefit and blessing from it. The self is naturally disposed to love that which is good to it.

When you have understood this well, then examine these three causes of love in respect of the Prophet and you will find that all three things which inspire love apply to him.

The beauty of his form and outward appearance and the perfection of his character have already been mentioned, so there is no need to say any more about them.

As regards the benefit and blessing his community gain from him, we have already mentioned the qualities of Allah he possessed – his compassion for them, his mercy for them, his guiding them, his tenderness for them and his striving to save them from the Fire. He is, "merciful, compassionate to the believers," (9:128) and "a mercy to the worlds," (21:107) and, "a bringer of good news, a warner and a caller to Allah by His permission." (33:45-46) "He recites its signs to them and purifies them and teaches them the Book and the Wisdom," (62:2) and "guides them to a straight path." (5:16)

What goodness could be worthier or of greater importance than his goodness to all the believers! What favour could be more universally beneficial and of greater use than his blessing to all the Muslims since he is their means to guidance, the one who rescues them from blind error, and the one who summons them to success and honour? He is their means to their Lord and their intercessor. He speaks up on their behalf and bears witness for them and brings them to eternal life and everlasting bliss.

So it should be clear to you that love of the Prophet must be an obligation in the Shari'a because of the sound traditions we have related and the nature of his overflowing goodness and universal beauty we have just mentioned.

If a man can love someone who is generous to him just once or twice in this world, as is well known to be the case, or someone who saves him from destruction or harm even once, when that damage and harm are only of a temporary nature, then the one who gives him undying bliss and protects him from the eternal punishment of Hellfire should be loved more. A king is loved when his behaviour is good and a ruler is loved for his upright conduct. Someone who lives far away is loved for their knowledge or noble character. Whoever possesses all these qualities in total perfection is more entitled to be loved and more deserving of attachment.

'Ali, describing the Prophet, said, "Whoever saw him suddenly was in awe of him. Whoever mixed with him loved him." We mentioned that one of the Companions could not turn his eyes away because of his love for him.


Section 6: The obligation of faithfulness to the Prophet

Allah says, "Nothing is held against the weak and sick nor against those who find nothing to spend, provided they are true to Allah and His Messenger – there is no way open against the good-doers. Allah is Ever-Forgiving, Most Merciful." (9:92) The commentators say, "If they are true in sincere conduct towards Allah and His Messengers, they are sincere Muslims secretly and openly."

Tamim ad-Dari said that the Messenger of Allah said, "The deen is nasiha (good counsel/faithfulness). The deen is nasiha. The deen is nasiha." They asked, "To whom, Messenger of Allah?" He said, "To Allah and His Book and His Messenger and the Imams of the Muslims and the common people."

Our Imams said, "Nasiha for Allah and the Imams of the muslims and their common folk is an obligation."

Imam Abu Sulayman al-Busti said, "Nasiha is a word used to designate the desire for what is good for the one who is its object, and it is not possible to explain it with a single word which will contain it all. Linguistically, it means sincerity (ikhlas) from the statement, 'I made the honey pure (nasahtu),' when it is clear of wax."

Abu Bakr ibn Abi Ishaq al-Khaffaf said, "Nasiha is doing something which contains rightness and harmony. It comes from nisah which is the thread with which a garment is sewn."

Nasiha to Allah consists of having sound belief in His Oneness, describing Him in the way that He deserves to be described and disconnecting Him from what cannot be attributed to Him. It is desire for what He loves and distance from what He hates and sincerity in worshipping Him.

Nasiha to His Book is belief in it, acting according to it, reciting it well, humility with it, esteem for it, understanding it and seeking fiqh in it and protecting it from the interpretation of the extremists and the attack of heretics.

Nasiha to the Messenger is confirming his prophethood and obeying him in what he commands and forbids.

Abu Sulayman and Abu Bakr said, "It is to support, help and protect him, both in life and death, and to bring his Sunna to life by seeking, protecting and spreading it and taking on his noble character and behaviour."

Abu Ibrahim Ishaq at-Tujibi said, "Nasiha to the Messenger of Allah is to confirm what he brought and to cling to his Sunna, spread it and urge people to it and to call to Allah, His Book and His Messenger and to the Sunna, and acting by it."

Ahmad ibn Muhammad said, "One of the obligations of the heart is to believe in nasiha for the sake of the Messenger of Allah."

Abu Bakr al-Ajurri and others said, "Nasiha for his sake includes two types of sincere conduct. One is nasiha during his lifetime and the other is nasiha after his death."

In his lifetime, the nasiha of his Companions was by helping him, protecting him, opposing his opponents, obeying him and expending their lives and property in his service as in Allah's words, "Men who were true to their contract with Allah." (33:23) "They help Allah and His Messenger." (59:8)

The nasiha of the Muslims for his sake after his death is by maintaining esteem, respect and great love for him, persevering in learning his Sunna, understanding his Shari'a, love for the People of his House and his Companions, avoiding things disliked in his Sunna and what deviates from it, hating doing that and being on guard against it, compassion for his community, seeking to learn about his character, his life and behaviour and steadfastness in acting according to it.

So from what has been said it can be seen that nasiha is one of the fruits of love as well as one of its signs.

Imam Abu'l-Qasim al-Qushayri related that 'Amr ibn al-Layth, one of the Kings of Khurasan and a famous hero who was known as as-Saffar, was seen in a dream and was asked, "What did Allah do with you?" He replied, "He forgave me." He was asked, "Why?" He said, "One day I climbed to the peak of a mountain and looked down at my armies and their vast number pleased me. Then I wished that I could have been present with the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, to aid and help him. Allah thanked me and forgave me because of that."

Nasiha to the Imams of the Muslims is to obey them when they command to the truth, help them, command them to the truth, remind them of it in the best way, inform them about what they have overlooked and what they do not see of the Muslims' affairs, and not to attack them nor cause trouble and dissension for them with people and alienate them from people.

Nasiha for the sake of the common Muslims is to guide them to their best interests, help them in the business of their deen and this world by word and action, warning those of them who are heedless, enlightening the ignorant, giving to those in need, veiling their faults, and repelling what will harm them and bringing what will benefit them.


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