We should note that it is Allah Ta'ala who has initially sought out His servant. Allah Ta'ala says, "I am near to you already..."
The relevant Qur'anic ayat is as follows:
“We are nearer to him than his jugular vein.” (50, 16)
Allah Ta'ala is saying, "I am near to you already, but you also show that you are near to Me. My nearness is an established fact. It is you who have distanced yourself from Me!"
The servant‐slave accepts this fact. "Then how can one get close?"
In the following manner: "Any command that originates from Me should penetrate your heart in such a way that your whole body, each and every part of it, should succumb to that command and act accordingly."
From the wide spectrum of commands one set of commands concern mu'asharat also. That, in this world social relationships, contact between one another, should be of ease and comfort, one of "ishrat", "ishrat" being the root of the word "mu'asharat". It is taken for granted that the Mu'min will have a pleasurable stay in Jannat in the Hereafter. "But, no!" Allah Ta'ala is saying, "Even in this world a pleasurable life, a life of ease and comfort, the life of a Jannati, is specially reserved for the Mu'min and not for anybody else!"
The root of the word "mu'asharat" is "ishrat", which means gaiety/happy social life/pleasurable. We are thus to spend our life in this world in "aysh‐wa‐ishrat" ‐ in gaiety and happiness; in delightful ease and comfort; in peace and tranquility with one another.
Mu'asharat is dependant on a compatible relationship; and relationships are dependant on acceptable behaviour from all sides. Each person should have such a relationship with the next person that there is nothing but sheer joy and comfort. There should be no displeasure. Relationships should be full of ease ‐ not disease!
Rasulullah (saws) said: “Most certainly, even a little riyaa is shirk.”
Riyaa is the intention to enhance one’s dignity in the eyes of` the people by means of acts of obedience to Allah Ta’ala. This attitude totally defeats the purpose of Ibaadat. The purpose of Ibaadat is to gain the Pleasure of Allah Ta’ala. Since show or display of Ibaadat involves division of purpose, riyaa is termed shirk-e-asghar (the lesser shirk). By means of riyaa one splits the purpose of Ibaadat by endeavouring to attain both public acclaim as well as the Pleasure of Allah Ta’ala. In this regard the Qur’aan Shareef says:
“He who hopes for the meeting with His Rabb should practise righteousness and associate none with the Ibaadat of his Rabb.”
The Mufassireen have explained that the meaning of “and associate none with the Ibaadat of his Rabb” is “to refrain from riyaa”. Qadhi Thanaa-ullah explained this aayat in Tafseerul Mazhari as follows:
Many fard and wajib obligations and duties such as zakat, qurbani, helping a needy person, assisting one's poor relatives, etc. are not fulfilled on account of miserliness and stinginess. When these are not fulfilled, one is actually committing a sin. This is the harm that is caused to one's Dîn. A stingy person is regarded as despicable and useless in the eyes of everyone. This is the worldly harm. Is there anything worse than this?
One of the cures of this is that love for this world and love for wealth should be removed from the heart. Once this love has been removed, there is no way that miserliness can remain.
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THE HADEETH CORNER
حَدَّثَنَا يَحْيَى بْنُ بُكَيْرٍ، حَدَّثَنَا اللَّيْثُ، عَنْ عُقَيْلٍ، عَنِ ابْنِ شِهَابٍ، قَالَ أَخْبَرَنِي أَبُو سَلَمَةَ، أَنَّ أَبَا هُرَيْرَةَ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ قَالَ سَمِعْتُ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ لِرَمَضَانَ " مَنْ قَامَهُ إِيمَانًا وَاحْتِسَابًا غُفِرَ لَهُ مَا تَقَدَّمَ مِنْ ذَنْبِهِ ".
Narrated Abu Huraira Radiallahu Anhu:
I heard Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam saying regarding Ramadan, "Whoever prayed at night in it (the month of Ramadan) out of sincere Faith and hoping for a reward from Allah, then all his previous sins will be forgiven."