Relationship with Almighty Allah
By: Ayatullah Shaheed Sayyid Muhammad Baqir al-Hakim
This category comprises belief in Almighty Allah, bearing good idea about Him, trust in Him, love for Him, hope for Him, and fear of Him.
Having Full Faith in Almighty Allah
In the field of having full faith in Almighty Allah, Imam al-Sadiq (‘a) is reported to have said: Everything has a limit… the limit of putting trust in Almighty Allah is to have full faith in Him… and the limit of having full faith in Almighty Allah is to fear nothing save Him.¯1
This tradition is an expression of the holy verse that reads: Those who deliver the messages of Allah and fear Him, and do not fear anyone but Allah; and Allah is sufficient to take account. (33:39)
The following validly reported tradition demonstrates the relationship between full faith and social relations.
Imam al-Sadiq (‘a) is reported to have said: A sign of the validity of a Muslim’s full faith is that he does not please people by means that brings forth the ire of Almighty Allah and does not blame them for matters that Almighty Allah has not given to him. Sustenance does not descend because of acquisitiveness or stop due to refusal. If you try to escape getting your sustenance as you try to escape death, it will surely catch up with you as same as death does when it will unquestionably overtake you. Out of His justice and fairness, Almighty Allah has made comfort and rest to reside in full faith and satisfaction. Likewise, He has made distress and sadness to reside in dubiety and dissatisfaction.¯2
Trust in Almighty Allah
Trust in Almighty Allah in social and political activities is a significant quality enjoyed by those who play the role of excellent examples in the society. Of course, committing one’s soul to Almighty Allah follows exerting all possible efforts to fulfill one’s responsibilities as perfectly as possible.
Imam Zayn al-’Abidin (‘a) is reported to have narrated the following: One day, I left my house and sat inclined against a wall. Suddenly, I noticed that a man clad in white was gazing at me, “‘Ali ibn al-Husayn,” the man said, “Why do you look so distressed and sad? Are you sad for a worldly affair? The sustenance of Almighty Allah is present for both the righteous and the sinful.”
“No,” I answered, “I never feel sad for such affairs, because the matter is as exactly as you have just said.”
“Then,” the man said, “If you are sad for the Hereafter, it is most surely a true promise that is judged by an All-omnipotent Judge.”
“No,” I answered, “I am not sad for that either, because it is as exactly as you have just said.”
“What are you so sad for then?” asked the man.
“In fact,” I answered, “I fear the consequences of this sedition of Ibn al-Zubayr due to which people are bewildered.”
The man laughed and said, “O ‘Ali ibn al-Husayn, have you ever seen anyone who prayed to Almighty Allah but He did not respond to him?”
“No,” I answered, “I have not.”
“Have you ever seen anyone who had trust in Almighty Allah but He disappointed him?” the man asked.
“No,” I answered, “I have not.”
“Have you ever seen anyone who begged Almighty Allah but He did not give him?” the man asked.
“No,” I answered, “I have not.”
Then, the man disappeared.¯3
In this narration, the Imam (‘a) mentioned a social problem, which was the sedition of Ibn al-Zubayr and its consequences on the masses. The answer came to guide him to put his trust in Almighty Allah, because the Imam (‘a) had nothing to do in the face of this problem.
Having the Best Concept of Almighty Allah
Having the best concept of Almighty Allah in ones line of conduct, as well as in ones worldly life and life hereafter, achieves great results in one’s entire life.
In al-Kafi, Shaykh al-Kulayni, through a valid chain of authority, has reported Imam al-Ridha (‘a) as saying: Always have the noblest idea about Almighty Allah, for He says, “I am as exactly as My believing servant thinks of Me, whether good or bad.”¯4
According to a validly tradition that is reported by Burayd ibn Mu’awiyah, Imam al-Baqir (‘a) has said: We find written in Imam ‘Ali’s book that the Messenger of Allah (S) said from the minbar: I swear by Allah save Whom there is no god: no good of this world or the Hereafter has been granted to any believer except by his having a good idea about Almighty Allah, putting his hope in Him, behaving courteously, and abstaining from backbiting faithful believers. I swear by Allah save Whom there is no god: Almighty Allah will not punish any believer (in Him) after repenting and imploring His forgiveness except because of his having a bad idea about Him, showing lack of hope in Him, behaving impolitely, and backbiting believers.
I swear by Allah save Whom there is no god: no servant (of Him) bears a good idea about Him except that He will be as good as the idea that the servant bears about Him. This is because Almighty Allah is All-generous and has full authority over all that is good. He is therefore too generous to disappoint the good idea and the hope that His servant has about Him. Therefore, hold a good idea about Almighty Allah and turn your hopes to Him.¯5
Undoubtedly, having such a good idea about Almighty Allah has a natural reflection on one’s view about the constancy and continuity of one’s social relations with others.
Shaykh al-Saduq, in man-la-yahdhuruhu’l-faqih, through his chain of authority, has reported the following paragraph to be a piece of Imam ‘Ali’s instructive will to his son, Muhammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah: Having an ill idea about Almighty Allah must never control you, lest it destroy any item of conciliation between your friend and you.¯6
Love for Almighty Allah
Love for Almighty Allah is one of the greatest qualities that affect all fields of life. Confirming this fact, the Holy Qur'an says, Say, “If you do love Allah, then follow me so that Allah will love you.” (3:31)
Those of faith are overflowing in their love for Allah. (2:165)
Laying much stress on this meaning in social relations, the traditions of the Ahl al-Bayt (‘a) have demonstrated that all social relations must be founded on the basis that one must love or hate for no purpose other than seeking nearness to Almighty Allah. They have also confirmed that the reality of religion is this love and sincere affection.
In al-Kafi, Shaykh al-Kulayni has reported through a valid chain of authority that Abu-’Ubaydah al-Hadhdha' reported Imam al-Sadiq (‘a) as saying: He who loves, hates, and gives for the sake of Allah is actually enjoying a perfect faith.¯7
According to another validly reported tradition, Abu-Hamzah al-Thumali has reported Imam Zayn al-’Abidin (‘a) as saying: On the day when Almighty Allah shall assemble the past and the late generations, a caller will cry out in such a loud voice that all people can hear him, “Where are those who loved each other for the sake of Allah?” A group of people will then stand up and they will be allowed to Paradise without settling any account with them. On their way to Paradise, the angels will meet them and ask where they are going. “We are going to Paradise without any account being settled with us,” they will answer. “Which party of people are you?” the angels will ask. “We have loved each other for the sake of Allah,” they will answer. “What deeds have you done?” the angels will ask. “We used to love and hate others for the sake of Allah,” they will answer. “How excellent a recompense for those who work and strive!” the angels will say.¯8
According to a third authentically reported tradition, Abu-Ubaydah Ziyad al-Hadhdha' reported that Imam al-Baqir (‘a) said to him, O Ziyad, is religion anything other than love? You should have considered Almighty Allah’s saying (in the Holy Qur'an), “Say: If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive you your faults, and Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. (3:31)”
You should have considered Almighty Allah’s saying to Muhammad (S), “Allah has endeared the faith to you and has made it seemly in your hearts. (49:7)”
He has also said, “They love those who have fled to them. (59:9)”
Thus, religion is love and love is religion.¯9
Hope in and Fear of Almighty Allah
A servant of Almighty Allah is supposed to have hope in Him under all circumstances, no matter how harsh the conditions he may experience, how intense the situations he may face, or how many sins he might have committed. At the same time, a servant is supposed to fear Him under all circumstances, no matter how good the conditions may be and how frequent his acts of worship.
Describing the manners of true believers, the Holy Qur'an, on more than one occasion, has referred to this quality of hope in and fear of Almighty Allah, which is one of the high ranking qualities of true believers: Their limbs do forsake their beds of sleep, while they call on their Lord, in fear and hope. (32:16)
Those whom they call upon do desire for themselves means of access to their Lord, - even those who are nearest, they hope for His mercy and fear His wrath. (17:57)
Call on Him with fear and longing in your hearts, for the mercy of Allah is always near to those who do good. (7:56)
‘Ali ibn Ibrahim reports Imam al-Sadiq (‘a) to have said: My father used to say: There is no believer without two lights in his heart—light of fear and light of hope. If you weigh each one, it will not outweigh the other.¯1¯0
Hammad ibn ‘«sa reports Imam al-Sadiq (‘a) to have said: Luqman, the wise, said to his son: Fear Allah so much so that you think He will punish you even if you do all the good deeds of Jinn and men. Meanwhile, have so much hope in His Mercy that even if you commit all the sins of all Jinn and men, He will forgive you.¯11
Sharif al-Radhi has reported that Imam ‘Ali (‘a) said in one of his sermons: He claims according to his own thinking what he hopes from Allah. By Allah, the Great, he speaks a lie. The position is that his hope (in Allah) does not appear through his action although the hope of every one who hopes is verified through his action. Every hope is so, except the hope in Allah, the Sublime, if it is impure; and every fear is established except the fear for Allah if it is unreal. He hopes big things from Allah and small things from others but he gives to others (consideration that) he does not give to Allah.
What is the matter with Allah, glorified be His praise? He is accorded less (consideration) than what is given to His creatures. Do you ever fear to be false in your hope in Allah? Or do you not regard Him the center of your hope? Similarly, if a man fears man he gives him (such consideration) out of his fear, which he does not give to Allah. Thus, he has made his fear for men ready currency while his fear from the Creator is mere deferment or promise.¯12
1. - Al-Hurr al-’Amili, Wasa'il al-Shi’ah 11:158, H. 4.
2. - Al-Hurr al-’Amili, Wasa'il al-Shi’ah 11:158, H. 5.
3. - Al-Hurr al-’Amili, Wasa'il al-Shi’ah 11:166, H. 1.
4. - Al-Hurr al-’Amili, Wasa'il al-Shi’ah 11:180, H. 1.
5. - Al-Hurr al-’Amili, Wasa'il al-Shi’ah 11:181, H. 3.
6. - Al-Hurr al-’Amili, Wasa'il al-Shi’ah 11:181, H. 6.
7. - Al-Hurr al-’Amili, Wasa'il al-Shi’ah, 11:431, H. 1.
8. - Al-Hurr al-’Amili, Wasa'il al-Shi’ah, 11:432, H. 6.
9. - Al-Hurr al-’Amili, Wasa'il al-Shi’ah 11:435, H. 17; al-Barqi, al-Mahasin 1:409, H. 931, published by the Ahl al-Bayt World Assembly.
10. - Al-Hurr al-’Amili, Wasa’il al-Shi’ah 11:170, H. 4.
11. - Al-Hurr al-’Amili, Wasa’il al-Shi’ah 11:170, H. 6.
12. - Nahj al-Balaghah, Sermon No. 160.