Hypocrisy

WARNING AGAINST SOMETHING AND THEN DOING IT MYSELF

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Question
: If I exhort my brothers and warn them against some sins, but fall into these sins myself, am I considered a hypocrite? Please advise me, (and) may Allaah reward you with good.

Response: It is obligatory upon you to repent from the sins and exhort your brothers against them. And it is not permissible for you to continue (committing) sins and not advise your brothers, because (doing) this is combining two sins. So it is upon you to repent to Allaah from that, in addition to advising your brothers. This does not make you a hypocrite, however, it does place you in that (state) which is condemned as blameworthy by Allaah in His saying:

{Most hateful it is with Allaah that you say that which you do not do}, [Soorah as-Saff, Ayah 3

{Enjoin you al-Birr (piety and righteousness and each and every act of obedience to Allaah) on the people and you forget (to practise it) yourselves, while you recite the Scripture! Have you then no sense?}, [Soorah al-Baqarah,Ayah 44]

And with Allaah lies all success and may Allaah send prayers and salutations upon our Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wasalaam) and his family and his companions.

Fataawa al-Lajnah ad-Daa.imah lil-Buhooth al-‘Ilmiyyah wal-Iftaa., – Volume 12, Page 268, Question 2 of Fatwa No.16920

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INTRODUCTION TO THE SIGNS OF HYPOCRISY

Ibn al Fadl

Indeed, all praise belongs to Allah. We praise Him, seek His aid and forgiveness. We seek refuge in Allah from the evil of our own selves and from our evil actions. Whomsoever Allah guides, none can misguide him and whomsoever Allah misguides then none can guide him. I bear witness that nothing has the right to be worshipped except Allah, in His Oneness, without any partners and I bear witness that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger.

“O you who believe! Fear Allah as He should be feared and die not except that you are Muslims.’ [Surah ali-‘Imran (3):102]

“O Mankind! Fear your Lord, Who created you from a single soul (adam) and from him created his partner and from them both sent forth many men and women. Fear Allah from whom you demand your mutual rights and reverence the wombs that bore you. For Allah ever watches over you.” [Surah an-Nisa’ (4):l]

“O you who believe! Fear Allah and always say a truthful word. He will direct you to do righteous actions and will forgive you your sins. Whosoever obeys Allah and His Messenger has already attained the highest success.”[Surah al-Ahzab (33):70-71]

To proceed: Indeed the best speech is the Book of Allah and the best guidance is the guidance of Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam). The worst of affairs are the newly invented matters, for every newly invented matter is an innovation and every innovation is misguidance and every misguidance is in Hellfire.

Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullah) divides the whole of mankind into three categories: “Since Allah, the Exalted, sent Muhammad and strengthened him with His assistance and the hijrah, mankind has divided into three groups: The Believers: they are the ones who believe in Him outwardly and inwardly. The disbelievers: they are the ones who outwardly disbelieve in Him. The hypocrites: they are the ones who believe outwardly but not inwardly. Because of this, Surah al-Baqarah begins with four verses dealing with the description of the believers, two verses dealing with the description of the disbelievers and thirteen verses contain the description of the hypocrites. [Majmu’al-Fatawa 28/433]

The disbelievers are open in their disbelief. Their rejection of Allah and His Messenger is harmful only to themselves. As for the hypocrites, they openly profess belief yet belie the Qur’an and its bringer, Muhammad Inwardly they disbelieve and seek to destroy the Religion of Islam and its true adherents, as Ibn ul-Qayyim al-Jawzi (rahimahullah) has mentioned: “Thirteen verses (in the beginning of Surah al-Baqarah) describe the hypocrites due to their abundance, the many trials they cause and the intensefitnah they cause to Islam and its adherents.” [Madarij as-Salikeen p. 198]

So they seek to destroy Islam, to turn Iman into kufr, Tawheed into shirk, Sunnah into bid’ah, justice into oppression and reformation i nto corruption and mischief. Thus, they pose a greater danger to the Ummah than the disbelievers, whose plotting and planning is more evident and clear to the Muslims. They exist and have existed in every age and era in the guise of leaders, reformers and deliverers from oppression. Yet Allah has full knowledge of them and has already described them with their corruption and deception and will soon land them in the lowest depths of Hellfire. We seek refuge in Allah from that.

However, these outright hypocrites are only half of the very serious and corrosive disease of hypocrisy present within the Ummah. The other half is due to the hypocrisy in action which is widespread throughout the Ummah. You will not travel to a place where Muslims reside except that you will find a fair number among them lazy, delaying the fixed prayers beyond their proper times, lyin-, breaking promises, deceitful, cowardly, showing off, insincere, harsh and callous, backbiting, slandering and other such features which none but the outright hypocrites possess. When cancer spreads through the body, destroying it from within and corroding it, how can it seek to be fit, dynamic and full of vitality and what after that can restore it and bring it back to health and life? When such repugnant qualities a.-e present and widespread throughout the Ummah rendering it diseased and sick, how can the Ummah stand upon its feet and help itself.?

How can this Ummah receive help and assistance from Allah? How will His mercy, blessings, aid and forgiveness descend? The mischief, oppression and injustice dominant in the Muslim lands is made to continue because of the hypocrisy in action which you and I are guilty of. Until we seek repentance, hurry for His forgiveness. cleanse our hearts from such sins and strive to remove them with Allah’s help, you and I as individuals will not prosper, nor our communities, nor this Ummah. Indeed, if Allah wishes, He could destroy us all and bring a generation who would be completely devoid of such evil characteristics, worship Him sincerely and aid His cause with firmness upon His Path. The Exalted says: “O You who Believe! Whoever from among you turns away from his Religion (then) soon will Allah bring a people (in replacement of you) whom He will love and they will love Him.” [Surah al-Ma’idah-(5):54]

It is we who are destitute, in need and Allah is free of all wants, worthy of all Praise. Therefore this is a matter of great, concern, consideration and fear for us all.

The Messenger sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: “Indeed the Muslim sees his sins as if he is sitting under a mountainfearing that it will fall upon him.” [Reported by al-Bukhari from’Abdullah ibn Mas’ud]

Somehow great effort has to be spent in expelling this fatal virus of hypocrisy. It might be pertinent to mention a way Ibn Qudamah alMaqdisi’ has described, by which a person can remove evil characteristics from himself. He mentions that a person should list all those particular qualities which are a defect in his character. Then he should attend to each one, individually and strive to remove it by doing the opposite of it and to persist in that until its opposite becomes a habit. During his struggle against this idiosyncrasy he should learn why he fell into it, how he is drawn towards it and how he can avoid it in the future. Once he has overcome and. removed one of these characteristics he can cross it off his list, praise and thank Allah for this success which was bestowed upon him by the Mercy of Allah and then move onto the next one.

One can list those particular signs of hypocrisy which are characteristic of him and Allah’s refuge is sought from that – and then seeking Allah’s aid he can strive to remove them, thus clearing himself from hypocrisy [[Mukhtasir Minhaj il-Qasideen p.379]. I hope Allah benefits me and all those who read this from what Shaikh A’id has written. Some of the Pious Predecessors used to say “May Allah show mercy to that man who guided us to our faults”, so mail Allah have mercy upon him and forgive him for directing us to the signs of hypocrisy which he has deduced from the Qur’an and the Sunnah and may He also reward him for his effort and great concern.

[in reference to when the munafiqoon wanted to stay behind from the campaign of al-Ahzab and go back to their houses & their excuses..]

When Allah mentioned those who told lies to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and offered false excuses for staying behind, He mentioned them in the worse way that they could ever be mentioned: “They (the hypocrites) will present their excuses to you (Muslims), when you return to them. Say (O Muhammad) `Present no excuses, we shall not believe you. Allah has already informed us of the news concerning you. Allah and His Messenger will observe your deeds” [al-Tawbah 9:94 – interpretation of the meaning].

Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And when a party of them said: `O people of Yathrib (Al-Madinah)! There is no stand (possible) for you (against the enemy attack!) Therefore go back!’ And a band of them ask for permission of the Prophet saying: `Truly, our homes lie open (to the enemy).’ And they lay not open. They but wished to flee.” [al-Ahzab 33:13]

This is the excuse that the Munafiqoon used when they wanted to stay behind from the campaign of al-Ahzab and go back to their houses, claiming that the houses were unprotected.

Their excuse was unacceptable, because they did not really want to protect their houses; what they actually wanted to do was to run away. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And they lay not open. They but wished to flee.”

“And a band of them ask for permission of the Prophet.” It was narrated from Ibn `Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him)that they said: “We are afraid that our houses may be robbed.” This was stated by more than one (of the scholars). They used the excuse of going back to their houses, claiming that they lay open (to attack), i.e., there was nothing to protect them from the enemy, so they were scared that the enemy may attack their houses. Allah said (interpretation of the meaning): “And they lay not open” – it was not as they claimed. “They but wished to flee” – i.e., to run away from battle. (Tafseer Ibn Katheer).

Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And among them is he who says: `Grant me leave (to be exempted from Jihad) and put me not into trial.’ Surely, they have fallen into trial. And verily, Hell is surrounding the disbelievers.” [al-Tawbah 9:49]

Ibn Katheer (may Allah have mercy upon him)said: Allah says, and among the Munafiqeen are those who will say, O Muhammad, Grant me leave to stay behind and do not put me into trial by making me go out (to fight) with you, because of the young women of the Romans. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): “Surely, they have fallen into trial” meaning, they have fallen into trial (fitnah) by their saying that. Muhammad ibn Ishaq narrated that Az-Zuhri, Yazeed ibn Rooman `Abd-Allah ibn Abi Bakr, `asim ibn Qutadah and others said: One day, when he was preparing to go out [to fight the Romans], the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said to Al-Jadd ibn Qays, the brother of Bani Salimah, “O Jadd, how do you feel about going to fight Bani’l-Asfar (the Romans)?” He said, “O Messenger of Allah, will you grant me leave to stay behind and not expose me to trial (fitnah)? For by Allah, among my people there is no man who is more tempted by women than I am, and I fear that if I see the women of Bani’l-Asfar I will not be able to control myself.” The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) turned away from him and said, “I give you leave (to stay behind).” Then there was revealed concerning al-Jadd ibn Qays the following words (interpretation of the meaning): “And among them is he who says: `Grant me leave (to be exempted from Jihad) and put me not into trial.’…” i.e., because he feared the temptation of the women of Bani’lAsfar. But this is not the case.

The trial into which he fell by staying behind from accompanying the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and preferring his life to the life of the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was a far greater trial… “And verily, Hell is surrounding the disbelievers” means, they will not be able to find any way out or means of escape from it.

Allah also says concerning the excuses of the Munafiqeen (interpretation of the meaning): “If you ask them (about this), they declare: We were only talking idly and joking.’ Say: Was it at Allah, and His Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) and His Messenger that you were mocking?’ Make no excuse; you disbelieved after you had believed. If We pardon some of you, We will punish others amongst you because they were Mujrimoon (disbelievers, polytheists, sinners, criminals).” [al-Tawbah 9:65-66]

Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allah have mercy on him) said: If a person says words of kufr or divorce (talaq) in jest, his wife is thereby divorced and he is counted as a kafir, even if he was only joking, because when he said it he meant to say it. The fact that he was joking is not an excuse. This is unlike the case when a person is forced to do something, or he makes a mistake, or he forgets – all of which are excused. A person who is forced to say something is excused, and what he said may be deemed as allowable, but the one who jokes is not allowed to utter in jest words of kufr or of divorce. When he said the words, he meant to say them, and he cannot claim that he was forced or that he made a mistake or said it out of forgetfulness or ignorance. Allah and His Messenger do not accept joking as an excuse that will ward off the punishment; indeed, the one who jokes is more deserving of punishment. Do you not see that Allah accepts the excuse of the person who is forced to speak words of kufr if his heart is filled with true faith, but He does not accept any excuse from the one who jokes. On the contrary, He says (interpretation of the meaning): “If you ask them (about this), they declare: `We were only talking idly and joking.’ Say: `Was it at Allah, and His Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations,etc.) and His Messenger that you were mocking?'” Make no excuse; you disbelieved after you had believed” [al-Tawbah 9:65-66] (I’lam al-Muwaqqi’een, 3/63)

We say to every heretic and hypocrite who propagates kufr and clearly makes statements of kufr in works of fiction or journalistic articles and song lyrics, then gives that excuse that he did not intend to insult religious symbols or the things that Islam holds sacred or the person of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), we say to these munafiqeen in every place and time: “Present no excuses, we shall not believe you” [al-Tawbah 9:94 – interpretation of the meaning]. We say to them: wait until the Day comes when it will be said to you: “O you who disbelieve (in the Oneness of Allah — Islamic Monotheism)! Make no excuses this Day! You are being requited only for what you used to do” [al-Tahreem 66:7 – interpretation of the meaning].

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HYPOCRISY: MOST HATEFUL TO ALLAH

Taken from Usool al-Deen al-Islami

By Shaykh Muhammad ibn Ibraaheem al- Tuwayjri

“Most hateful it is with Allâh that you say that which you do not do” [al- Saff 61:3]

“Enjoin you Al-Birr (piety and righteousness and each and every act of obedience to Allaah) on the people and you forget (to practise it) yourselves, while you recite the Scripture! Have you then no sense?” [al- Baqarah 2:44]

Hypocrisy is a serious sickness and a great crime. It means making an outward display of Islam whilst inwardly concealing kufr. Hypocrisy is more dangerous than kufr (disbelief) and the punishment for it is more severe, because it is kufr mixed with Islam and its harmful effects are greater. Hence Allaah will put the hypocrites in the lowest level of Hell, as He says (interpretation of the meaning): “Verily, the hypocrites will be in the lowest depth (grade) of the Fire; no helper will you find for them[al-Nisaa’ 4:145]

The hypocrites are always confused, always planning deceit and plots. Although outwardly they appear to be with the believers, inwardly they are with the kaafireen. So sometimes they are inclined towards the believers and sometimes they are inclined towards the kaafireen. “(They are) swaying between this and that, belonging neither to these nor to those; and he whom Allaah sends astray, you will not find for him a way (to the truth – Islam)”[al-Nisaa’ 4:143 – interpretation of the meaning]

Because of the corruption of their hearts, the hypocrites are the most averse of mankind to the religion of Allaah, as Allaah tells us about them (interpretation of the meaning): “And when it is said to them: `Come to what Allaah has sent down and to the Messenger (Muhammad),’ you (Muhammad) see the hypocrites turn away from you (Muhammad) with aversion” [al-Nisaa’ 4:61]

The dealings of the hypocrites revolve around their own interests. When they meet the believers, they make a show of belief and loyalty, in order to deceive the believers and as an action of dissimulation, hoping for whatever good and war-booty they have. But when they meet their masters and chiefs, they say, we are with you in your shirk and kufr. Allaah says concerning them (interpretation of the meaning): “And when they meet those who believe, they say: “We believe,” but when they are alone with their Shayaateen (devils – polytheists, hypocrites), they say: “Truly, we are with you; verily, we were but mocking Allaah mocks at them and gives them increase in their wrong- doing to wander blindly”[al-Baqarah 2:14-15]

The hypocrites have many characteristics, the worst and most serious of which is disbelief in Allaah. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And when it is said to them (hypocrites): `Believe as the people (followers of Muhammad, Al-Ansaar and Al-Muhaajiroon) have believed,’ they say: `Shall we believe as the fools have believed?’ Verily, are the fools, but they know not”[al-Baqarah 2:13]

Among their characteristics are enmity and envy (hasad) towards the believers, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “If good befalls you (O Muhammad), it grieves them, but if a calamity overtakes you, they say: `We took our precaution beforehand’ and they turn away rejoicing”[al-Tawbah 9:50]

Among their characteristics is mockery of Allaah, His Messenger and His religion. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “If you ask them (about this), they declare: `We were only talking idly and joking.’ Say: `Was it at Allaah, and His Ayaat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) and His Messenger that you were mocking?’

Make no excuse; you disbelieved after you had believed”[al-Tawbah 9:65-66]

Among their characteristics is that they spread corruption on earth, with disbelief, hypocrisy and sins. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And when it is said to them: `Make not mischief on the earth,’ they say: `We are only peacemakers.’ Verily, they are the ones who make mischief, but they perceive not”[al- Baqarah 2:11-12]

Among their characteristics are slander and lies. Allaah tells us about them (interpretation of the meaning): “They swear by Allaah that they are truly, of you while they are not of you, but they are a people (hypocrites) who are afraid (that you may kill them)”[al-Tawbah 9:56]

Among their characteristics is that they enjoin what is evil and forbid what is good, and they are stingy with their wealth. Allaah says concerning them (interpretation of the meaning): “The hypocrites, men and women, are one from another; they enjoin (on the people) Al‑Munkar (i.e. disbelief and polytheism of all kinds and all that Islam has forbidden), and forbid (people) from Al Ma`roof (i ..e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do), and they close their hands [from giving (spending in Allaah’s Cause) alms]. They have forgotten Allaah, so He has forgotten them. Verily, the hypocrites are the Faasiqoon (rebellious, disobedient to Allaah)”[al-Tawbah 9:74] Among their characteristics are greed and avarice: “And of them are some who accuse you (O Muhammad) in the matter of (the distribution of) the alms. If they are given part thereof, they are pleased, but if they are not given thereof, behold! They are enraged![al- Tawbah 9: 58 – interpretation of the meaning]

Among their characteristics are those which were described by the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him): “There are four (characteristics), whoever has all of them is a complete hypocrite, and whoever has some of them has some element of hypocrisy, unless he gives it up: when he speaks, he lies; when he makes a treaty, he betrays it; when he makes a promise, he breaks it; when he quarrels, he resorts to insults.”(Narrated by Muslim, 53)

Among their characteristics is a concern with appearances and fancy speech whilst they are inwardly corrupt. Allaah says concerning them (interpretation of the meaning): “And when you look at them, their bodies please you; and when they speak, you listen to their words. They are as blocks of wood propped up. They think that every cry is against them. They are the enemies, so beware of them. May Allaah curse them! How are they denying (or deviating from) the Right Path?”[al-Munaafiqoon 63:4]

If the kuffaar are obvious enemies from without, then the hypocrites are hidden enemies from within. They are more harmful and more dangerous to the Muslims, because they mix with them and know their situation. Allaah has decreed that the ultimate destiny of the kuffaar and hypocrites will be in Hell: “Surely, Allaah will collect the hypocrites and disbelievers all together in Hell”[al-Nisaa’ 4:140 – interpretation of the meaning]

But because of the seriousness of the harm they cause, the hypocrites will be in the lowest level of Hell, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “Verily, the hypocrites will be in the lowest depth (grade) of the Fire”[al Nisaa’ 4:145]

Because the danger posed to the Muslim ummah by the kuffaar and hypocrites is so great, Allaah commanded His Messenger to strive against them: “O Prophet (Muhammad)! Strive hard against the disbelievers and the hypocrites, and be severe against them; their abode will be Hell, and worst indeed is that destination” [al-Tahreem 66:9 – interpretation of the meaning] .

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