repentance

The Diagnosis and the Cure

It is reported that Qatādah – Allāh have mercy on him – said:

Verily the Qurān guides you to your disease and your treatment: as for your disease, it is your sins; and as for your treatment, it is to seek the forgiveness of Allāh.

Al-Bayhaqī, Shuʿab Al-Īmān 9:347 no. 6745.

The Lucrative Brother

It is reported that Bilāl b. Saʿd – Allāh have mercy on him – said:

A brother who, whenever you meet him, points out to you one of your faults (for you to correct yourself) is better for you than a brother who, whenever you meet him, puts a dīnār (money) in your hand.

Abū Bakr Al-Daynūrī, Al-Mujālasah wa Jawāhir Al-ʿIlm no. 1428.

Peo­ple Change & Allah For­gives

It is reported that ʿAbdullāh b. Masʿūd – Allāh be pleased with him – said:

Do not be hasty in praising people or blaming them, for perhaps what pleases you from a person today will displease you tomorrow, and perhaps what displeases you today, will please you tomorrow. Indeed, people change. It is Allāh who forgives the sins. And Allāh is more merciful to his servant the day he meets him than a mother who lays out a bed for her child in an empty patch of land and feels [the ground]: if there is a risk of being stung, it will be her instead of him (her child), and if there is a risk of being pricked by a thorn, it will be her instead of him.

Al-Bayhaqī, Shuʿab Al-Īmān article 6177, and others.

Never Give Up Re­pent­ing

It is reported that a man came to ʿAlī – Allāh be pleased with him – and asked, What do you think about a man who committed a sin? He replied, He must seek Allāh’s forgiveness and repent to Him. [The man] said, He did that, but then sinned again? [ʿAlī] said, He must seek Allāh’s forgiveness and repent to Him. The man again said, He did that, but returned to sin. [ʿAlī] said, He must seek Allāh’s forgiveness and repent to Him. The man said for the fourth time, He did, but then sinned again. ʿAlī then said, Until when? Then he said, He must seek Allāh’s forgiveness and repent to Him; and not give up until it is Shayṭān who is defeated [overcome].

Hunād b. Al-Sarī, Kitāb Al-Zuhd article 910

Seven Hundred Deadly Sins

Sa’īd b. Jubayr – Allāh have mercy on him – reports that a man once asked Ibn ‘Abbās – Allāh be pleased with them:

“How many kabā`ir (major, deadly sins) are there? Seven?” He replied, “They are closer to seven hundred than seven; except a major sin does not remain so if one (truly) seeks forgiveness [from Allāh], and a lesser sin does not remain so if one insists on continuously doing it (i.e. it becomes a major sin).”

Al-Tabarī, Al-Tafsīr article 9207, et al.