Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (Radiallahu Anhu) and Hadh rat Abu Sa’eed (Radiallahu Anhu) both bore testimony to having heard from Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam), that the gathering engaged in zikr of Almighty Allah is surrounded by the angels on all sides, the grace of Allah and sakeenah (peace and tranquility) descend upon them, and Almighty Allah speaks about them, by way of appreciation, to His angels.
Hadhrat Abu Zar (Radiallahu Anhu) related that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) had said to him,
“I advise you to fear Allah, as this is the root of all virtues; remain engaged in the recitation of the Holy Qur’an and in zikr of Almighty Allah, which will earn you an appreciation in the Heavens and serve you as a light in this world; keep silent for most of the time, so that you, speak nothing but good, as this will keep the Devil away from you and make it easy for you to perform your religious duties, abstain also from too much laughing, for laughing weakens the heart and deprives the face of its spiritual glow (luminosity), always take part in jihaad as this is the sign of piety for my ummah; like the poor and keep their company; compare your lot with persons lower than you, and never look up to those higher than you, otherwise you will forget the bounties of Almighty Allah and become ungrateful to Him; try to retain ties with your relatives though they may try to break them; do not hesitate to speak out the truth, though it may be bitter for others; always obey Almighty Allah inspite of adverse criticism; find fault with your own self and never with others; do not criticize others for the shortcomings that you suffer from.
O! Abu Zar (Radiallahu Anhu) there is no wisdom better than farsightedness. Abstinence from the unlawful is the best act of piety, and good manners constitute true nobility.
This appreciation, in the presence ‘of the angels: by Almighty Allah for those engaged in zikr is for two reasons.
Firstly, it is because the angels had submitted at the time of the creation of Hadhrat Aadam (Alayhis salaam) that man would commit mischief in the world.
Secondly, it is because the Angels are ever engaged in prayers, submission, and obedience to Almighty Allah and are devoid of the very instinct for sin. Whereas man has the instinct of obedience as well as of sin and (in addition) he is surrounded by things that lead him to negligence and disobedience and has desires and lust ingrained in him. Therefore prayers, submission and abstinence from sin, despite all his handicaps, are more praiseworthy and creditable on his part.
In one hadith it is stated that when Allah created Paradise, He told the angel Jibra-eel (Alayhis salaam) to go and visit it. On his return from Paradise, he reported, “0 Lord! by Your Greatness. Whoever comes to know of it, will do his best to enter it”. That is to say, its pleasures, comforts, enjoyments and blessings are so intense that there will be nobody who after knowing and believing these will not strive his utmost for admission into it.
Almighty Allah then surrounded Paradise with hardships and made it compulsory to offer prayers, observe fasting, take part in jihaad, go for Haj etc. for admission into it. Almightv Allah then sent Jibra-eel (Alayhis salaam) to visit it again. He saw these and then said. “0 Allah! I fear that hardly anybody will be able to enter it.”
Similarly, after creating Hell, Almighty Allah ordered Jibra-eel (Alayhis salaam) to visit it. After witnessing the punishments, horrors, afflictions and tortures of Hell he submitted. “I swear by Thy Grandeur that one who comes to know of the conditions in Hell will never dare go near it.”
Then Allah surrounded Hell with acts of indulgence, such as adultery, drinking wine, cruelty, disregard of the Divine commandments etc. and then asked Jibra-eel (Alayhis salaam) to visit it again. He saw it and submitted, “My Lord! I fear that hardly anybody will be able to escape it.”
It is for this reason that when a person obeys Almighty Allah and abstains from sins, he becomes praiseworthy with respect to his environments, and therefore Almighty Allah expresses His pleasure about him.
The angels mentioned in this hadith and in so many other similar ahaadith belong to a special group who are duty-bound to visit the places and attend the meetings where people are engaged in zikr. This is supported by another hadith wherein it is stated that there is a class of angels who are scattered all over, and when and wherever anyone of them hears zikr being recited he calls all his companions to come to that place and partake of what they wanted. They throng to the place and they fill it up to the sky.
Source: Fazaail Aamaal