intentions

Secret Devotion

It is reported that Shurayḥ the Judge used to have a house in which he would spend time alone on Fridays; no one knew what he did in it.

Al-Dhahabī, Siyar A’lām Al-Nubalā` Vol.4 p105.

It is reported that Abū Al-‘Āliyah said, “I learned writing and the Qur`ān without my family noticing, and not a drop of ink was ever seen on my garment.”

Abū Nu’aym, Ḥilyatu Al-Awliyā` Vol. 2 p217.

It is reported that when Ibn Abī Laylā prayed [at night], if someone entered [his house], he would lie down on his bed [as if he was sleeping].

Ibid. Vol. 4 p351.

It is reported that Ayyūb Al-Sakhtiyānī used to pray all night and hide it. In the morning, he would raise his voice as if he had just woken up.

Al-Dhahabī, op. cit. Vol. 6 p17.

It is reported that Dāwūd b. Abī Hind fasted for forty years without his family knowing, he would take his lunch out with him and donate it in the street.

Ibid. Vol. 6 p378.

What to intend in Prayer

‘Abdullâh b. Mubârak said:

I asked Sufyân Al-Thawrî, “When a man stands to pray, what should he intend by his recitation and prayer?” He replied, “He should intend that he is personally entreating his Lord.”

Muhammad b. Nasr Al-Marwazî, Ta’dhîm Qadr Al-Salâh Vol. 1 p199.

They All Feared Hypocrisy

Ibn Abī Mulaykah – Allah have mercy on him – said:

I met thirty of the Prophet’s Companions – Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him – and every one of them feared falling into nifāq (hypocrisy); not one of them claimed he had the level of faith of Jibrīl or Mīkā`īl.

Quoted by Al-Bukhārī, Al-Sahīh, Chapter on the believer fearing that his deeds will be nullified without him realizing.

In this chapter and narration there is a refutation of the Murji`ah sect who claimed that īmān (faith) consists of belief in the heart and nothing else i.e. a person’s deeds are not part of his faith and do not affect it.

This narration indicates that a person may perform deeds in which his intention may not be totally pure and sincere and because of which he falls into a type of practical hypocrisy.

The fact that they feared hypocrisy does not mean they actually fell into it. Rather this was by way of them being very careful not to fall into it, and it is part of their taqwā – Allah be pleased with them.

This narration also indicates that the Companions believed that people can have different levels of faith, contrary to the Murji`ah who claimed that the īmān of the most pious true believers is the same as everyone else.

Nothing contrary to any of this has been related from the Companions, so it is as if there is a consensus (ijmā’) amongst them on this.

The following are some of the illustrious Companions Ibn Abī Mulaykah met:

· ‘Alī b. Abī Tālib

· Sa’d b. Abī Waqqās

· Mother of the Believers ‘Ā`ishah

· Her sister Asmā`

· Mother of the Believers Umm Salamah

· ʿAbdullah b. Mas’ūd

· ʿAbdullah b. ʿUmar

· ʿAbdullah b. ‘Abbās

· ʿAbdullah b. Al-Zubayr

· Abū Hurayrah

· ‘Uqbah b. Al-Hārith

· Miswar b. Mikhramah

Allah be pleased with them all.

These notes have been summarized from Fath Al-Bārī.

Secret Tears

Muhammad b. Wāsi’ said:

I have lived amongst men who were such that one of them would lie with his wife on the same pillow and his side of the pillow would be soaked with his tears under his cheek without his wife even noticing.

Ibn Abī Al-Dunyā, Al-Ikhlās wa Al-Nīyah (Sincerity and Intentions) p34.

Muhammad b. Wāsi’ Al-Azadī Al-Basrī was one of the famous and pious Tābi’īn. He reports from Anas b. Mālik – Allah be pleased with him – and others. He died in 123H, Allah have mercy on him.

Impressive

Imām Ibrāhīm Al-Nakha’ī said about the Salaf:

When in a gathering, they used to dislike a person showing the best of what he has.

Ibn Abī Al-Dunyā, Al-Ikhlās wa Al-Nīyah (Sincerity and Intentions) p50.