The Importance of Sincerity

Allah Ta’ala say, “Allah is the One Who created death and life that He may test you which of you is best in deed.” (Surah Al-Mulk, verse :2)

Al-Fudhail bin ‘Iyad rahimahullah defines “best in deed” as ‘the most sincere in it and the most correct in it’. If an amal is sincere but incorrect, it is not accepted. If an amal is correct but insincere, it is also not accepted. Ikhlas is performing an action solely for the sake of Allah. Correct when it is done according to the sunnah/guidance (Narrated by Abu Nu’aim in Hilyat Al-Auliya’, 8:95 as cited in Tajrid Al-Ittiba’ fi Bayan Asbab Tafadhul Al-A’mal, page. 50. Another reference in Jami’ al-’Ulum wa al-Hikam, page. 19)


Mutarrif Ibn Abdullah rahimahullah said, “A good heart determined by how good the amal is, while a good amal determined by how good the intention is.” (As cited by Ibn Rajab in Jami’ al-’Ulum wa Al-Hikam, page. 19)

Ibn Al-Mubarak rahimahullah said, “How often it is that a small action is made great by its intention, and a great action is made small by its intention.” (As cited by Ibn Rajab in Jami’ Al-’Ulum wa Al-Hikam, page. 19)

A noble and waraa’ (very careful) scholar, Sufyan Al-Thauree rahimahullah said, “Nothing more difficult for me to heal than my intention.” (Tadhkirah Al-Sami’ wa Al-Mutakallim, cited from Ma’alim fi Tariq Talabil ‘Ilmi, page. 19)

Al-Daruqutni rahimahullah said, “In the beginning, our pursuit of knowledge was not merely for the sake of Allah, however the knowledge refused us, up to a time that it dragged us to be sincere solely for Allah’s sake in our search of knowledge.” (Tadhkirah As-Sami’ wa Al-Mutakallim, cited from Ma’alim fi Tariq Talabil ‘Ilmi, page. 20)

In the biography of Ayyub Al-Sikhtiyani, mentioned by Shu’bah that Ayyub had said, “I have been mentioned many times. But I don’t like to be mentioned.” (Siyar A’lamin Nubala’, cited from Ma’alim fi Tariq Talabil ‘Ilmi, page. 22)

Ibnul Qayyim rahimahullah said, “The year is a tree, the months are its branches, the hours are its leaves and every breath man takes is a fruit of the tree. Thus the fruit of the tree of a person who grows over ma’ksiat (disobedience) to Allah will produce the fruit of hanzhal (bitter and ugly fruit). However, the fruit of this tree will only be harvested on the Day ofMa’aad (the day when Man will return to Allah) and the sweet fruit will only be differentiated from the bitter fruit when it is harvested. Ikhlas and tawheed are a tree in the heart. The branches of this tree are good deeds and its fruits are a pleasant life in the world and never-ending comfort of Jannah (paradise) in the hereafter. As the fruits of Jannah will never come to an and nor will it be prevented to pick, the same can be said regarding the fruits of tauheed and ikhlas in the world. While shirk, lies and riyaa (doing good actions for show) are also a tree in the heart. The worldly fruits of this tree are fear, sorrow, depressed, narrowness of the heart (discontent, cowardice, etc) and darkness of the heart. In the Hereafter the fruits of this tree will be Zaqqum and everlasting punishment. These two trees have been mentioned by Allah in Surah Ibrahim.” (Al-Fawa’id, page. 158).

Shaykh Prof. Dr. Ibrahim Al-Ruhaili hafidhahullah said, “Ikhlas in performing an amal solely for the sake of Allah is the basis for every good deed. As the foundation of good deed, Ikhlas determines the authenticity of good deed and its acceptance by Allah ta’ala. And mutaba’ah (in accordance with the sunnah of the Prophet) follows as the next basis of the acceptance of all good deeds by Allah.” (Tajrid Al-Ittiba’ fi Bayan Asbab Tafadul Al-A’mal, page. 49)



[Summarized from Ust Abu Muslih Ari Wahyudi’s Note]



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