Ethical Discourse # 67– Page 1 of 4

In the Name of All{h, the Source of General Mercy to all of Humanity, the Source of Specific Grace to the Believers

Topic of Discussion: Warnings and Preparedness
âad|th 54 · Discussion 67
Lectures on Akhl{q [Isl{mic Ethics and Spirituality] Delivered by
his Eminence Ñyatull{h al-`UÉm{ al-H{jj Shaykh N{Äir Mak{rim Sh|r{z|

Translated by Saleem Bhimji
for Al-FatÅ Al-Mub|n Publications [ --] and Isl{mic Publishing House []

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Text of âad|th:
¸` · ¸` ` ¸ · ..` .· . .· ' · · · = ·. · ` · =` - ¸` · · ` . ¯,` ` · ` . ´` ·` . .` ¸` .' ` ` ..` · · .. ´ -¯ ` ¸ ·
. ·` - . .. ´` · ·~ ¸ · .¯.` · · . ¸` · ` . ´ .` - .` . ´,.· · · · · ` . ´ .' ¸.· . ` ` . · ..` -`
¸,-` ` ·` ..` ·` .` - ·` ` . ¸` · …
Translation of the âad|th:
t has been narrated from Ibne `Abb°s that he said, the Messenger of All{h had said the following in one of his speeches or words of
admonition, “O people! Do not let this your transient world keep you busy from your next life; and do not let your lower desires and
passions take control over you over the obedience to your Lord; and do not let your faith be the thing which leads you to committing
sins; and take account of your own selves before your actions are taken to account (by someone else); and prepare yourself before you end
up punish yourself; and prepare yourself for the journey before you are forced to make that journey. ”

Explanation of the âad|th:
In this Åad|th, it has been mentioned by the Noble Prophet of Isl{m that, “O’ People! Be careful that the transient world does not keep
you pre-occupied and negligent of the next life.” This is a warning from the greatest leader of humanity (the Prophet MuÅammad ibne
`Abdull{h ) who truly recognized the transient world and how it is.
In the Qur`{n, in S}ratul âad|d, verse 20, it states:
.` ` · ' ` ` ´ ` . ´ ` , ` ` - · ` .` . ` . · ,` ' ·., - ¸ · . ..` · . ·.`
“Know that surely the life of this world is (nothing but) a plaything and game and an ornament of beauty and a means of competition between
yourselves and the (competition) in the multiplication in wealth and children…”

BiÅ{rul Anw{r, Volume 74, Page 181
Ethical Discourse # 67– Page 2 of 4
Around us, there are people whose level of intellect is like that of a baby. They are always busy playing in the “sand-box” (of life) and their
hearts are attracted to this transient world. However the one whose intellect is complete would never fall for the temptations of the gold and
glitter of this world. We see that young children sometimes play “house” – one child is the police officer, another child plays the head of the
house while another child plays another role. Sometimes even we older people laugh and enjoy watching these children play this game and
lovingly say to ourselves, what are these young children doing!? There are also people who, when they see our actions, start to laugh at us –
and what do they say in regards to us – “What, do these people think!! Do they think that they are going to live in this world forever??”
After this warning, the Noble Prophet presents five commandments, each of which has been mentioned by him in other occasions in the
form or a short saying and in reality, each of these sayings is an independent plan of action for our life:
1. The first part of the âad|th tells us:
` . ´` · ·~ ¸ · ` . ¯. · ` ` .` · ·
“Do not prefer your own lower desires over the obedience of your Lord.”
The vigilant and spiritually awake person is he who places the obedience of All{h i over the obedience and following of the passions of his
soul. When such a person is at the interchanges of life, it is here that it is made clear who is the Muslim and who is not, just as it has been
mentioned in verse 20 of S}ratul Nis{ in which we read about a group of people who state:
` ´ ¸` · ` ¸ ·` .` .. . ¸` ·
“We believe in a part of it, and we disbelieve in a part of it…”
In regards to these people, it is clear that they have not yet become Muslims – those who have truly submitted. The true believer (Mo’min)
and one who has truly submitted (Muslim) do not place their lower desires and wishes above the wishes of All{h i. The true believer
(Mo’min) and one who has truly submitted (Muslim) are not the sort of people who would do whatever their lower desires and wishes want
them to do, placing the rulings of All{h i under their feet and trampling upon them.
Those people who follow their lower desires (instead of All{h i) state, “Whenever I want something and realize that it is according to that
which my own lower self desires, however at the same time it is also exactly the same as the rulings and commandments of All{h i, I say,
‘That which All{h i wants is contained in this ruling (of His) – and thus, I will follow it. However when it comes to the rulings of All{h i
which go against my own lower desires and passions, then I state, ‘This is difficult and hard to follow’ and is a matter of necessity (to
perform) and since it is stated that:
. ` - ` -,` ` .` ` .
Thus, it is not a problem if I perform this act.”
2. The second saying tells us that:
` . ´,.· · · · · ` . ´ · . ·` - .
“Do not make your faith as a thing to perform sins with.”
There are some people who use their faith to commit sins – how so? They state things like: “If we are already corrupted and polluted with
sins, then All{h i is Al-Kar|m [The Generous]. With faith in the generousness of All{h i, we will commit sins (as He will forgive us).”
There is a sentence which is quite commonly heard amongst the people which states that, “We are all drowning in our sins however we have
âusa|n.” It is here that they use the Wil°yah of the Ahlul Bait as the means through which they can sin even more!
Ethical Discourse # 67– Page 3 of 4
In reality, this is not faith, rather, this is a precursor to the disobedience to All{h i. The person who speaks like this is actually lying as if
he truly had complete reliance [Tawakkul] upon All{h i, then he would obey Him and he would not use this belief in complete reliance
upon Him to commit more sins.
This is the same discussion which is also brought up in relation to Shaf{`at (intercession) which has been mentioned in our Tafs|r of the
Qur`{n, Tafs|r-e-Namuna.
It has been narrated that a poet once uttered the following poem in “praise” of Amirul Mo`min|n `Al| ibne Ab| ä{lib :
- ···· ¯ ..-- . ¸· ¸¯ ·¯ ¸·.- ·-· ·¯ .·. ¸·
“O’ Gatekeeper (Of Paradise), if the negotiation on the plain of Resurrection (in regards to one’s
sins and good deeds) is done with `Al|, Then I am guaranteed that I can do whatever I want to do, even sin.”
That night in his sleep, he saw Amirul Mo`min|n `Al| ibne Ab| ä{lib who said to him, “You has said a very bad poem, change the line
of your poem.” The man said, “What should I change it to?” The Im{m replied to him: “Say the following.”
- ···· ¯ ..-- . ¸· ¸¯ ·¯ ¯ ¸¯ ¸· - ·
“O’ Gatekeeper (of Paradise), if the negotiation on the plain of Resurrection (in regards to one’s
sins and good deeds) is done with `Al|, Then have modesty in the face of All{h, and perform less sins.”
The person who has firm belief in the Wil{yah or guardianship of the Ahlul Ba|t knows that every week, atleast once or twice – all of his
actions are presented to Im{m à{Åibul Zam{n.
In the 105
verse of S}ratul Tawbah we read:
´ ¸ · ..` ·` .` ` · .` ` . ´ · = . , · . ` ·
“And say: Work! All{h will surely see your actions and so with His Messenger and so will the true believers.”
Since All{h i, the Prophet and the Im{m sees our actions, we should have some humility and shame in the presence of (all of them
and especially) the Im{m of our time , and not perform any sins.
If the deed of our actions was to be given to the Im{m of our time , he would see nothing but sins from the top of it, right to the
bottom: lying, false accusations, back-biting, cursing and the use of other foul language, and…If we are really true believers then we would
not do anything which would lead to the irritation of our Im{m . We should not do anything which would earn the curse of the Im{m of
our time upon us. In addition, we see that there are many societal and individual issues which we are plagued with and which lead to
the discomfort and torture of Im{m al-âujjah .
3. The third point mentioned is that:
´ . ¸` · ` . ´ ` .` - .` -`
“Take account of your own selves before your actions are taken to account (by someone else).”
How spiritually awake a person truly is who himself takes account for all of his actions before someone else does this job for him!
If we truly believe in the Day of Resurrection and the accountability and answerability for all of our deeds, then why do we not sit down and
account for our own actions?
Ethical Discourse # 67– Page 4 of 4
Truly we state that: If on the Day of Judgement the judging (of the actions) was to be given to us to do ourselves and we were told, “Each
one of you come forward and judge your own actions (instead of having All{h i or anyone else sit in judgment over you) and this is your
deed of actions in the world and now it is up to you to judge for yourselves whether you should be of the people of Paradise or of the Hell
fire”, what would we say? Did we actually perform pure and sincere actions in the world? Really, what positive actions have done that All{h
i would find us worthy of Paradise?
4. The forth point mentioned in this Åad|th is that:
.` ·` . ¸` · . ` ` . ·
“Prepare yourself (for the next life) before you end up punishing yourself.”
Before you prepare your own punishment (in the hell) and are plagued with having to put up with that, prepare the tools necessary for your
prosperity and happiness through your obedience and worship of All{h i and purchase the happiness of both worlds.
5. The fifth point mentioned in this Åad|th is that:
. ¸` · ¸,-` ` ·` .` - ·` `
“And prepare yourself for the journey before you are forced to make that journey.”
For this travel of yours, prepare the good and items needed before you are forcefully taken from here for that trip since this transient world
is like a temporary stop upon which the travelers dismount, gather some water and food to drink for that long journey ahead of them upon
which there is no water or food available.
At this temporary step, if you become busy with playing games and all of a sudden the call is made that the next part of the journey is now
underway and that you must get up and continue on with the rest of the travel and you see that you have not prepared anything for the rest
of the journey, then it shall be your own loss!

…and all praise belongs to All{h i – only the mistakes are mine. (Translator)