repentance

Relying on some deeds, forgetting others

It is reported that Abū Ayyūb Al-Anṣārī – Allāh be pleased with him – said, “A person might do a single good deed, rely on it and forget sins that he regards insignificant, but then meet Allāh (on the Day of Judgment) with those sins surrounding him. And a man might commit a sin, but never stop fearing its consequences, until he meets Allāh safe and sound.”

Al-Ḥāfidh Ibn Ḥajr, Fatḥ Al-Bārī, references this narration to Asad b. Mūsā’s Al-Zuhd. A slightly different wording is reported by Ibn Al-Mubārak in Al-Zuhd wa Al-Raqā`iq Vol.1 p170.

True Repentance

O Believers! Repent to Allāh truly and sincerely [Al-Taḥrīm (66): 8]

In explanation of this verse, Al-Ṭabarī reports the following narrations in his Tafsīr:

He reports that ʿUmar b. Al-Khattāb – Allāh be pleased with him – was asked about true repentance. He replied, “It is that a man repents from an evil deed, and never does it again.” He also reports that ʿUmar said, “It is that you repent from the sin and never do it again, or never intend to do it again.”

Similarly, he reports from ʿAbdullāh (Ibn ‘Abbās) – Allāh be pleased with him – that he said, “A person repents, and then never goes back to the sin.”, and “It means that a person never returns to the sin from which he repented.”

Mujāhid is quoted as saying, “They seek Allāh’s forgiveness and then never go back to sin.”

Qatādah is quoted as saying, “It is the true and sincere repentance.”

Al-Ṭabarī, Tafsīr Al-Ṭabarī, in the commentary on Sūrah Al-Taḥrīm.

The Tawbah of Zādhān

Al-Dhahabī said about Zādhān:

He was one of the major scholars, he was born during the life of the Prophet – Allah’s peace and blessing be upon him…he was a reliable and truthful reporter…he reported numerous ahādīth. The following are some of the Companions he reported from:

  • ʿUmar
  • ‘Alī
  • Salmān (Al-Fārsī)
  • Ibn Mas’ūd
  • ‘Ā`ishah
  • Hudhayfah
  • Jarīr Al-Bajalī
  • Ibn ʿUmar
  • Al-Barā` b. ‘Āzib

Here is the story of how he repented. He narrates:

I was a boy with a nice voice and I was good at playing drums. I was once with a friend and we had nabīdh (a date infusion drink that can turn alcoholic) and I was singing for my friends. Ibn Mas’ūd was passing by and entered upon us; he struck the drink container we had and broke the drum. Then he said, “O boy! If your nice voice was to be heard reciting Qur`ān instead you would be the man!” And then he went on his way. I asked my friends, “Who was that?” They told me it was Ibn Mas’ūd. At that point tawbah was cast into my soul, and so I ran after him crying, I grabbed his garment and he turned to me and embraced me and cried. He said, “Welcome to him who Allah loves. Sit down.” He then went inside and brought out some dates for me.

Thereafter, Zādhān became pious; Al-Dhahabī also reports that he was seen praying and it was as if he was a piece of wood or a tree in his stillness and humility in prayer.

He died in 82H, Allah have mercy on him.

Al-Dhahabī, Siyar A’lām Al-Nubalā`, in his biography of Zādhān.