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Sincerity in Ones Action

By: Jan Ali Kazmi
Sincerity of act can be attained only when a man becomes selfless and performs all acts only for the sake of Allah. Fasting is an excellent practice to nullify (valueless) the selfish desires in man, to purify all his acts and deeds sincerely for Allah. Likewise, sacrifice is also an act, which can lead man towards sincerity of action and deeds.
If we think over the importance and significance of our own existence we would find out that we do not have any independent existence of our own. There is a philosophical term "Mumkin ul Wajood" or "Possible Existence". The meaning of this term is that if a person is 45 years of age, before that his existence was not present in this world and after his death his existence will finish in this world. The world would still exist irrespective of the fact that if a man lives or dies, man's existence or non-existence does not make any difference. Before 45 years, he did not exist so it means that there is a very big power that gave him the existence. Thus this proves that our existence is not our own and we are totally dependent on the mercy of Allah, for our existence and our being, and if Allah wills He can take away our life in no time and then we would not exist at all. This proves that a man is completely dependent on the will of Allah for his existence and his being. Then the question to be raised here is that is there any use of loving ourselves so much or loving our existence, which is transient (short-lived) and temporary to such great extent (degree) as we do?
Let us take another example in this respect. A drop of water if it were been mixed into the soil would lose its existence forever. This would be diminished and become extinct (no longer exist) at all. But if the same drop of water is mixed in the seawater it becomes a part of the sea and attains a life and an existence. By its association with the sea and it becomes a part of the sea. Further, if the same drop of water is been mingled (mixed) with the ocean it attains an eternal life and an everlasting existence. Similar, is the situation of man that if he forsakes the love of Allah and the love of the Ahlul-Bait, it would be as if he was been separated from the ocean and mingled into the soil, and so become extinct. On the other hand, if we drown ourselves in the ocean of the love of Allah and the Ahlul-Bait then we would attain eternal life and we would undertake the journey from being non-existent to eternal and everlasting existence. This is the philosophy encompassed (included) in the benefit involved in loving Allah and the Ahlul-Bait.
This was a philosophical discussion but if we come down to the level of ethics and morality we would find that man would deem himself very low and humble if he gets a chance to meditate on his actions and deeds. For example, the night of Qadr is the night to reconsider ones actions and if we sincerely judge between our own acts and the benedictions (worship) and blessings of Allah, we would automatically start loving Allah and despising (hating) ourselves and our selfishness. If a man contemplates (intends) little he would find out how greatly man was been gifted by Allah and how patient has Allah been despite all his misdeeds and sins towards his Lord. For instance he had committed a sin and disobeyed Allah but his Lord showed patience and provided him with economical security and social benefits, although Allah was equally competent (capable) of punishing him there and then on his disobedience. Then he was daring enough to disobey his Lord again. Allah showed similar patience and blessed him with heirs (sons and descendents in whom man takes pride) and great wealth and fame. Although, Allah could have cursed him due to his disobedience and taken away all his privileges (favours), made him a pauper (beggar) and handicapped. Thus if a man thinks over his deeds and acts which he had been committing during the past and compare them with the blessings and benedictions which Allah had bestowed upon him. Then he would automatically hate himself and love and adore (respect) his Lord for all his mercy and benevolence (kindness).

Hate due to I 'ness
The point is that if a man would love himself then a man would love and hate others only for his own selfish reasons and his love of God would only be a conventional practice and not a genuine (sincere) attachment. However, when the love of the self is been replaced by the love of Allah then all the acts of man would be for the sake of Allah alone, and this is how the heart of man can be purified of all the worldly carving (desire) and ambition.
As it was been stated before, we can learn a lesson from the hypocrites, which Allah has mentioned in the Holy Quran. The reason that people were been divided among the believers and the hypocrites is that these people became lovers of the self and thus preferred their worldly relationships to Allah and His obed- ience. And this can solve the problem as to why so many people were roused against an extraordinarily capable and distinguished personality like Hazrat Ali (AS)? Although today, we find that Hindus adore Ali in their rhymes and poetry and Christians like George Sir George has written a tremendous book exalting and glorifying the distinguishing characteristics of Hazrat Ali (AS). And the question is that why did the people start despising (distasting) Hazrat Ali (AS) to such an extent that the Prophet of Allah (PBUH) had to declare in favour of Ali (AS) that,
"Whoever loves Ali is a believer and whoever despises Ali is a hypocrite".

Praising Ali (AS), Not Just Shias
Sir George presents an amazing sentiment in the praise of Hazrat Ali (AS) when he states that, "Ali is a sea, which is free of all collision."
Such statements been said by a Christian and a non-believer is truly amazing. Sir George further explains his notion by giving an example that:
If we want to create some vibration and collision in a glass of water, then flinging a small pebble in the glass can do it (and this tiny pebble becomes the cause of the effect of the desired collision). Now if the space is increased and if we want to create a collision in a pool of water then we would require a big cause i.e. a heavy stone would be required to create the desired collision and the vibration in the pool. But if we want to bring about a collision in the sea then the cause has to be a great one. It means that a thing as large or huge as a mountain would be required to bring about the desired collision in the sea. A small stone cannot become the cause of the desired collision and vibration. Thus, Sir George holds the view that Ali (AS) is the sea which is free of all collisions. Like war or poverty, misery or threat of death can create the least collision in Ali. But the vibration is caused automatically. When the cries of orphans are heard, wailing of widows at the misery of their plight and the plight of their children, a call of a beggar for help. Ali who did not cry in the midst of brutal wars like Khyber and Khandak but as soon as he hears the cry of orphans he cries helplessly and a great collision is thus been brought about within Ali.

Aroused by the Personality of Ali (AS)
Now it is a point to be considered seriously as to what could be the possible cause that so many people were aroused against a personality like Hazrat Ali (AS)? All this was for the love of self. This can be proved through the historical incidents.
Hazrat Ali (AS) was a great warrior and it is recorded in the history books that Ali (AS) had killed about ten thousand infidels and hypocrites during his lifetime. This killing of Hazrat Ali (AS) was not for any personal reasons but it was for the sake of Allah and the sake of His religion. Now if we assume that all the deceased (death) had at least ten relatives. Who had a soft corner for their relatives (although they died infidels) and thus despised (hated) Ali, as he had been the cause of their death. Then the number of foes (enemies) that Hazrat Ali (AS) had made in the cause of Islam reaches out to about hundred thousands. Then after Mecca was been conquered all the people converted into Muslims and so were the relatives of the deceased. In addition, it was here that the Prophet of Allah (PBUH) had to declare that,
"Whoever loves Ali is a believer and whoever despises Ali is a hypocrite".
The reason why the Prophet of Allah (PBUH) had to make this declaration was that all the relatives of the deceased accepted the true religion verbally. But still in their heart of hearts they used to feel sadness for their deceased relatives and blamed Hazrat Ali (AS), for being the cause of the death of their beloved relatives (sons, uncles, fathers, brothers etc.). Moreover, for this reason they harboured (kept) harsh feelings against Hazrat Ali (AS) and looked at him with hate and spite. It was here that the Prophet of Allah (PBUH) said before the people that when Ali killed the relatives of the Meccaan (people of Mecca) it was not for any personal gain. It was for the cause of Allah and Ali (AS) had killed them while these were infidels and hypocrites. If people spite Ali (AS) and hate him for the love of their deceased relatives who had died infidels and non-believers then you are a hypocrite. All the love and hate of a Muslim is for the sake of Allah and it should not be for any personal reasons. Therefore, it proves that hypocrites are those who despise others for the love of self and for things associated with the self.
The negative notion (idea) of separate nationality and nationalism, the cast system, tribal systems separate sects and breed (specimens) are also a product of the love of self, that a man prefers his nation and his national identity compare to the Islamic unity and cause. Islam does not approve of these ideas and notions of separate independent national identity and individuality except for the sole (single) Islamic singularity. Thus if a man is strong in his faith he would love or hate another being only for the love of Allah and the Ahlul-Bait. On the other hand, if a man is weak in his resolve and he loves and hates others for the love of self and his associates then he no longer remain a true believer. He become a hypocrite and in this way despises Ali (AS) and the cause of Ali (AS).
The love of self is a chronicle (historical) disease, which can turn a Muslim into a hypocrite and a non-believer and thus all his worships and good deeds are been wasted away. We should pray to Allah that He might save us from the actions for the sake of Allah and the love of the Ahlul-Bait. If we get rid of the feelings of self-love, then ninety percent of our sins could be eradicated (eliminated). A man can become a sincere believer and Faithful servant of Allah and the Ahlul-Bait.

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