Ramadan is approaching
From the Pen of Shaykh Binnory (rahimahullah)
The divine blessings of Ramadan
Ramadan is approaching. It will bring down the nur and special attention of Allah Ta’ala. It is a time of forgiveness for all the sins of the Ummah. The generosity of the Absolutely Generous (Allah) will encompass all. Iman and good deeds will flourish. The curtailing of eating, drinking and relations will create the ability to abstain from sins. The doors of Jannah will be opened. Locks will be placed on the doors of Jahannam. Every night the announcement will be made of numerous sinners being freed from the fire of Jahannum.
Wisdom of Allah’s commands
The commands and practices that Allah Ta’ala sent to the world are for the reformation of the heart, through which the soul becomes illuminated, and humans become distinguished from animals.
This causes those who are not practicing begin to practice and individuals that have neglected Allah Ta’ala become Allah-conscious.
Humans are distinguished from the level of animals and attain angelic qualities. The poor will be taken care of. The destitute and orphans will be shown mercy. In short, humans will become adorned with the highest level of character and good qualities.
Duties of Ramadan
For these reasons, Allah Ta’ala made the fasting of Ramadan compulsory and standing in Salah at night, a sunnah. So that a believing slave can read or listen to the Quran in these nights [and have his soul purified]. At times, he is making sajdah in the court of Allah Ta’ala, sometimes performing ruk’u with dignity and respect, sometimes standing, warming the heart with the touching melody of the Quran. In Ramadan, one becomes the embodiment of
یذكرون الله قیاما وقعودا وعلى جنوبهم
‘They remember Allah standing, sitting and reclining’ (Surah Aalu ‘Imran, Ayah: 191)
In addition to reciting/listening to the Quran at night, one is guided to practice on the Quran in the day.
What to achieve and how to achieve it
[During this blessed month], Lower your gazes and keep your tongues silent except for good words. Abstain from fighting and quarreling. Don’t fulfil any demand of evil temptation or desires. Give sadaqah. Hurry in all works of good and do not refuse to fulfil your obligations. Stay away from all evils. In short, reform your character, appearance, action and conduct, and become an angel entirely. Such reformation of the inner and outer-self should be made that from head to toe, it becomes apparent that this is an individual of an Allah-conscious nation.
(Extracted from Basair wa ibar, vol. 2 pg. 407-408)
The three stages of Hypocrisy
Muhaddithul ‘Asr; ‘Allamah Muhammad Yusuf Al-Binnory (rahinahullah) writes:
‘In the terminology of Islam, atheism and hypocrisy have the same meaning. The contradiction of speech and action is called hypocrisy and it has three stages:
The belief of the heart is correct but actions claim to be contrary. This is hypocrisy in actions.
There is no belief at all in the words of Allah Ta’ala and Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) but verbal claims of Iman and Islam are made for show. This is called hypocrisy in belief which is pure kufr and for it is warnings of the deepest part of Jahannam.
A person has kufr in his heart but outwardly does not reject Islam. Rather he apparently confesses to Islam and after interpreting and distorting the words of Quran and Hadith, applies it to his false beliefs. This is called atheism and heresy which stems from hypocrisy in interpretation and this is the most severe form of hypocrisy.
In these three stages of hypocrisy, the difference is that in the first stage (hypocrisy in actions), the Iman and belief remains and many branches of actions are present but there is hypocrisy in a specific branch of action. In the second stage (hypocrisy in belief), there is no Iman (‘Aqaaid) and no Islam (actions). There is only a claim which is purely for show i.e. despite having pure disbelief, one claims to be a Muslim. And the third stage is worse than this – together with hypocrisy in belief, it is coupled with distortion of the Quran and Hadith.
Today, the apparent common sin is that there is a claim of Islam by the tongue, but the actions are such that even a kafir feels ashamed. Hypocrisy in actions is something almost everyone is afflicted with, where Iman is claimed by the tongue but the actions are contrary. However, many people are actually suffering from worse; hypocrisy in belief i.e. they are only called Muslims because they have a link with Muslims, otherwise there is no Islam in their hearts, nor respect for the din of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam), nor belief in the sayings of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam). In the present age, heresy has developed into fashion. The gist of it is that Muslims are currently caught up in hypocrisy in actions and hypocrisy in belief. Today the disgrace and misfortune that we are experiencing is, in reality, the punishment of this hypocritical conduct.
(Extracted from Basair wa ‘ibar vol. 1 pg. 190)