ĀMIC DA‘WAH ACADEMY

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ISLĀMIC DA‘WAH ACADEMYRETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHBY ḤAḌRAT MAWLĀNĀ MUHAMMAD SALEEM DHORAT ḤAFIẒAHULLĀHALL RIGHTS RESERVED. NO PART OF THIS PUBLICATION MAY BE REPRODUCED, STORED INA RETRIEVAL SYSTEM, OR TRANSMITTED, IN ANY FORM OR BY ANY MEANS, ELECTRONIC,MECHANICAL, PHOTOCOPYING, RECORDING OR OTHERWISE, WITHOUT THE PRIORPERMISSION OF ISLĀMIC DA‘WAH ACADEMY.

ContentsTaqwā1Falāḥ1A Mu’min’s Goal2If We Have Taqwā2Tawbah3Benefits of Tawbah4Tawbah is Part of Taqwā5Benefits of Taqwā and Tawbah5The Believer’s Resolution6What if I Slip?6Allāh S is Most-Forgiving and Most-Loving7The Love of Allāh S for Those Who Repent9The Greatest Benefit of Tawbah10Never Lose Hope11Shayṭān Never Loses Hope, So Why Should We?11The Example of Two Friends12Shayṭān’s Deceit13

The Mercy of Allāh S14The Angels on Our Shoulders14Making Taqwā and Tawbah Easy15Standing in The Court of Allāh S16The Day Will Come18The Intoxication of Youth20Three Steps towards Taqwā and Tawbah23Fuḍayl ibn ‘Iyāḍ v Repents24g g g

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAH R ن َْح َم ُد ٗه َون َُصلِّ ْي َون َُسلِّ ُم َعلٰى َر ُس ْولِ ٖه الْ َك ِر ْي ِم ، اَ َّما َب ْعدُ َ : فأَ ُع ْو ُذ بِالل ِه ِم َن الشَّ ْی َط ِان ال َّر ِج ْی ِم بِ ْس ِم الل ِه ال َّر ْح ٰمنِ ال َّر ِح ْی ِم َ : واتَّقُوا الل َه لَ َعلَّ ُك ْم ُت ْف ِل ُح ْونَ۔ َر ِّب ْاش َر ْح لِ ْي َص ْدر ِْي َو َي ِّس ْر لِ ْي أَ ْمر ِْي َو ْاحلُ ْل ُع ْق َد ًة ِّم ْن لِّ َسانِ ْي َي ْف َق ُه ْوا َق ْولِ ْي ُ . س ْب َحانَكَ َلا ِع ْل َم لَ َنا اِ َّلا َما َعلَّ ْم َت َنا إِنَّكَ اَنْ َت الْ َع ِل ْي ُم الْ َح ِك ْي ُم۔ اَلل ُه َّم انْ َف ْع َنا بِ َما َعلَّ ْم َت َنا َو َعلِّ ْم َنا َما َي ْن َف ُع َنا إِ َّن الل َه َو َم َلآئِ َك َت ٗه ُي َصلُّ ْو َن َع َلى ال َّن ِب ِّي َيآ أَ ُّي َها الَّ ِذ ْي َن اٰ َم ُن ْوا َصلُّ ْوا َع َل ْي ِه َو َسلِّ ُم ْوا َت ْس ِل ْي ًما َ ، الل ُه َّم َص ِّل َو َسلِّ ْم َو َبا ِر ْك َعلٰى َس ِّي ِدنَا َو َم ْو َلانَا ُم َح َّم ٍد َو َعلٰى اٰلِ ٖه َو َا ْص َحابِ ِه َواَت َْب ِاع ٖه َواَ ْز َو ِاج ٖه َو ُذ ِّر َّياتِ ٖه۔ Taqwā Allāh S has created us for ‘ibādah (worship). Another term for ‘ibādah is taqwā. Taqwā is to abstain from everything that displeases Allāh S, and every sin, be it major or minor, displeases Allāh S. Thus, taqwā is to abstain from every major and minor sin. Falāḥ َّ ُ ٰ ّ َ َّ ُ ُ ْ َواﺗﻘﻮا اﻟﻠ َﻪ ﻟ َﻌﻠﻜ ْﻢ ﺗﻔ ِ ُ ْﻮ َن Allāh S says, And abstain from the Displeasure of Allāh so that you may ) acquire falāḥ. (2:189 1

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHOne who has acquired taqwā has acquired falāḥ. What isfalāḥ? Falāḥ is the success of this world and the Hereafter. Byacquiring taqwā through creating a barrier between ourselves anddisobedience to Allāh S, we will become successful in this worldand the Hereafter. On the other hand, if we ignore taqwā and turnaway from Allāh S due to Shayṭān and nafs, then we should returnto Allāh S by returning to taqwā through tawbah. So taqwā is thebasis for every success, and tawbah is the catapult which returnsus to taqwā. We as believers should find ourselves either withtaqwā or with tawbah.A Mu’min’s GoalOur main aim and goal should be to remain with taqwā. The zealshould be, ‘I will never commit a sin. Come what may, I will neverdisobey Allāh S. Even if I have to give my life, I will give my life,but I will not disobey Allāh S. I will keep taqwā intact becauseif I have taqwā, then the success of this world and the Hereafteris mine.’If We Have TaqwāIf we have taqwā, Allāh S is with us.َّ َّٰ ََ َّ ا ِّن اﻟﻠ َﻪ َﻣ اﻟ ِﺬﻳْ َﻦ اﺗﻘ ْﻮا Indeed, Allāh S is with those who adopt taqwā. (16:128)If we have taqwā, we become the beloved of Allāh S.َ ْ ُ ِ ُّﺐ اﻟ ْ ُﻤ َّﺘ ِﻘ ّٰ َ ا ِّن اﻟﻠ َﻪ Indeed, Allāh S loves those who adopt taqwā. (9:4)If we have taqwā, Jannah is ours.2

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHَ ْ اُ ِﻋ َّﺪ ْت ﻟ ِﻠ ْ ُﻤ َّﺘ ِﻘ It [Jannah] is prepared for the people of taqwā. (3:133)If we have taqwā, we will be safe from calamities and Allāh Swill fulfil all our needs.ُ ْ ُ َ ً ْ َ ٗ َّ ْ َ ْ َ َ ّ ٰ َّ ْ َ ََ َ َ ُ وﻣﻦ ﻳَﺘ ِﻖ اﻟﻠﻪ ﺠﻌﻞ ﻟﻪ َﺮﺟﺎ وﻳ َ ْﺮزﻗﻪ ِﻣ ْﻦ َﺣ ْﻴﺚ ﻟ ْ ِﺴ ُﺐ And Allāh S shall create a way out [from every calamity] forthe one who adopts taqwā. And He [Allāh S] shall provide forhim from sources from where he does not even imagine.(65:2-3)TawbahSo we cannot let go of taqwā. Taqwā has to be very precious to usbecause in taqwā lies all our success. But if we slip and lose taqwā,then we should immediately utilise the great bounty of tawbah andmake a U-turn and return to Allāh S.So the zeal should be to never leave the platform of taqwā;we will never let Shayṭān and nafs succeed; we will never letthem deceive us; but if they become successful, and we engagein disobedience to Allāh S then upon realisation that we havedisobeyed our Creator, we will not wait for tomorrow to dotawbah. If we disobey Allāh S in the morning, we will not wait forthe afternoon and if we disobey Allāh S in the afternoon, we willnot wait for the evening. We will not wait for the 15th of Sha‘bānor Laylatul-Qadr or the day of Jumu‘ah. We will not wait till wevisit Makkah Mukarramah and Madīnah Munawwarah. Rather,we will repent immediately. Why? Because tawbah has the samebenefits as taqwā.3

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHBenefits of TawbahAllāh S says,ّٰ َ ۤ ُْ ُ ُ َّ َ ُ ْ ْ َ ُ َ َوﺗ ْﻮﺑ ُ ْﻮا اِﻟﻰ اﻟﻠ ِﻪ َﺟ ِﻤ ْﻴ ًﻌﺎ اﻳّﻪ اﻟ ُﻤﺆ ِﻣ ْﻮ َن ﻟ َﻌﻠﻜ ْﻢ ﺗﻔ ِ ُ ْﻮ َن And O believers! Collectively make tawbah to Allāh S sothat you may acquire falāḥ [of this world and the Hereafter].(24:31)The one who repents also becomes the beloved of Allāh S,َّ ُّ ُ َ ّ ٰ ََّ ْ اﻟﺘ َّﻮاﺑ اِن اﻟﻠﻪ ِ ﺐ ِVerily, Allāh S loves those who are most repenting. (2:222)Tawbah also guarantees entry into Jannah,ََّّ ُ َ ُ َُّ ً َ ّ ٰ َ ۤ ُ ُ ََُٰۤ ﻳَﺎاﻳّ َﻬﺎ اﻟ ِﺬﻳْ َﻦ ا َﻣ ْﻮا ﺗ ْﻮﺑ ُ ْﻮا اِﻟﻰ اﻟﻠ ِﻪ ﺗ ْﻮﺑَﺔ ﻧ ُﺼ ْﻮ ًﺣﺎ ﻋ ٰﺴﻰ َرﺑّﻜ ْﻢ ا ْن ﻳّﻜ ِ َﺮ َّ َ ْ ُ َ ْ ُ َ ْ ُ َ ّ َ ْ ُ ْ َُ ﺎت َ ْﺠﺮ ْي ِﻣ ْﻦ َ ْ ِﺘ َﻬﺎ اﻟ ْ َﻧْ َﻬ ﻨ ﻋﻨﻜﻢ ﺳ ِﻴﺌﺎﺗِﻜﻢ وﻳﺪ ِﺧﻠﻜﻢ ﺟ ٍ ﺎر ِO you who have Īmān! Sincerely repent to Allāh S; your Rabbshall forgive your sins and enter you into gardens beneath whichrivers flow. (66:8)As a result of tawbah, Allāh S will save us from calamities andfulfil all our needs.Rasūlullāh s states,، َو ِم ْن كُ ِّل َه ٍّم َف َر ًجا ، َم ْن لَ ِز َم ا ْل ِا ْس ِت ْغفَا َر َج َع َل الل ُه لَ ٗه ِم ْن كُ ِّل ِض ْيقٍ َّمخْ َر ًجا َو َر َز َق ٗه ِم ْن َح ْي ُث َلا َي ْح َت ِس ُب Whoever holds fast to istighfār (seeking forgiveness from AllāhS), Allāh creates a way out for him from every difficulty, grantshim relief from every worry and provides him sustenance from4

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHsources he cannot even imagine.1Tawbah is Part of TaqwāFrom the benefits mentioned above, we notice that taqwā andtawbah share similar benefits. This is because as soon as a personrepents, he is no longer on the platform of tawbah; but hasreturned to the platform of taqwā. Thus, we can say that tawbahis part of taqwā.Allāh S says that He has prepared Jannah for the people of taqwā.From the qualities of the people of taqwā is that they repent whenthey sin:َ ْ ْ َ َ ّ ٰ ُ َ َ ْ ُ َ ُ ْ َ ۤ ْ ُ َ َ ْ َ ً َ َ ْ ُ َ َ َ َ ْ َّ َُُ ﺎﺳ َﺘﻐ ُﺮ ْوا ﻟ ِﺬﻧ ْﻮﺑِ ِ ْﻢ ﺎﺣﺸﺔ او ﻇﻠﻤﻮا اﻧﻔﺴ ﻢ ذﻛﺮوا اﻟﻠﻪ ﻓ ِ واﻟ ِﺬﻳﻦ اِذا ﻓﻌﻠﻮا ﻓ And [the people of taqwā are] those who, if they carry out anopenly immoral act or oppress themselves [by committing anyother sin], they remember Allāh and ask for forgiveness (andrepent) from their sins. (3:135)So tawbah is part of taqwā. Taqwā is to carry out the Commandof Allāh S, and the Command of Allāh S is: do not commit sins,and if you commit sins, then repent. Accordingly, repenting is alsopart of taqwā; it is a Command of Allāh S.Benefits of Taqwā and TawbahIf we are able to bring taqwā and tawbah into our lives, Allāh Swill grant us the goodness of this world and the Hereafter. AllāhS will grant us peace of mind and tranquillity of the heart inthis world. At the time of death, departure with Īmān is secured.1Sunan Abī Dāwūd, kitāb: الوتر chapter: في الإ ستغفار Ḥadīth: 15115

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHThe grave will become a garden from the gardens of Paradise.On the Day of Qiyāmah, we will be granted shade under theThrone of Allāh S and an easy reckoning. Crossing the Ṣirāt willbecome easy and safety from Jahannam and entry into Jannah isguaranteed.The Believer’s ResolutionAs mentioned earlier, our resolution should be to remain withtaqwā. We do not want to have to go towards tawbah. We haverepented and we will never sin. After performing Maghrib ṣalāhand leaving the masjid, when we return for ‘Ishā ṣalāh, we willreturn pure inshā’allāh. Thereafter, when we come back for Fajrṣalāh, we will return pure inshā’allāh. Then when we come backfor Ẓuhr ṣalāh, we will return pure inshā’allāh. This should be thezeal.Why should we give in to Shayṭān? Why should we feel thatwe are too weak and unable? We must feel confident that we canand inshā’allāh, through the Faḍl of Allāh S, we will, becauseAllāh S has given us all the ability to do it. If Allāh S has givenus the ability, then of course we can. But we are always in need ofthe Faḍl of Allāh S, therefore we say that we can and inshā’allāh,through the Faḍl of Allāh S, we will. We will remain so firm ontaqwā that we will not commit a single sin throughout the wholeyear and this condition will remain until we breathe our last. Thisshould be our zeal.What if I Slip?The thoughts: ‘What if I fail? What if I slip? What if I cannot?’should not cross our minds. We should ask these questions whenwe fail; but not now. As for now, we are making a firm resolution6

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHthat, inshā’allāh, we will not fail. There will be no failure and ifthere is no failure, why should we ask about what to do after it?Yes, when we fail, we will ask, ‘What now?’ the answer willbe: ‘Make tawbah and return to taqwā.’ When we return to taqwāthen the previous resolution of never sinning should be renewed.If we fail again and ask, ‘What now?’ tawbah will be the answeragain. When we return to taqwā again through tawbah, we muststrive to never fail. Then when we fail again and ask, ‘What now?’tawbah will be the answer again. The same cycle of taqwā andtawbah should continue.My brothers and sisters! We must hold fast to this advice oftaqwā and tawbah. Even if we fail a hundred times in one hour,we must never let this thought come into our minds that, ‘I cannotdo it.’Why should we give up? Allāh S has not set any limits fortawbah. Allāh S did not say, ‘If you repent a thousand, a hundredthousand or a million times, I will forgive you, but not after that.’Whether it be a million, billion, trillion times or more, there is nolimit.Allāh S is Most-Forgiving and Most-LovingWe must not disobey and displease Allāh S as He is our creator.We must always please Him. However, if we slip and disobeyHim, we must quickly please Him again by doing tawbah.In the following Al-Ḥadīthul-Qudsī, Allāh S says, َيا ا ْب َن أ ٰ َد َم إِنَّكَ َما َد َع ْو َت ِن ْي َو َر َج ْو َت ِن ْي َغ َف ْر ُت لَكَ َعلٰى َما كَا َن ِف ْيكَ َو َلا أُ َبالِ ْي O son of Ādam! Indeed, for as long as you call me, and have7

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHhope in me, I will (continue to) forgive you for whatever youdid, and I will not care.2Allāh S says in the Glorious Qur’ān,َّ َ َ َ ْ ُُ َْ ََُّٰ َْ ٰ ُ َ ﺎﻋﺒﺎد ِي اﻟ ِﺬﻳْ َﻦ ا ْﺳ َﺮﻓ ْﻮا َﻋﻠﻰ اﻧﻔ ِﺴ ِ ْﻢ ﻟ ﺗﻘ َﻨﻄ ْﻮا ِﻣ ْﻦ ّر ْﺣ َﻤ ِﺔ اﻟﻠ ِﻪ ِ ﻗﻞ ﻳ [O My messenger s!] Say, [that Allāh S is saying,] ‘O Myservants who have oppressed themselves [by sinning]! Do notlose hope in the Mercy of Allāh S ’ (39:53)Allāhu Akbar! Allāh S lovingly calls out to the sinners by saying,‘O My servants!’ Allāh S is sending a message through his Rasūls to those servants who have oppressed themselves by disobeyingHim; who have spent their lives in sin. Allāhu Akbar! Despite allour short comings, Allāh S is saying, ‘My servants’ giving us somuch hope. Do we not see hope in this verse?Rasūlullāh s says, َو َي ْب ُس ُط َي َد ٗه بِال َّن َها ِر ،ِ إِ َّن الل َه َع َّز َو َج َّل َي ْب ُس ُط َي َد ٗه بِاللَّ ْيلِ لِ َي ُت ْو َب ُم ِس ْي ُئ ال َّن َهار س ِم ْن َم ْغ ِربِ َها ُ َحتى َت ْطلُ َع الشَّ ْم ، ِ لِ َي ُت ْو َب ُم ِس ْي ُئ اللَّ ْيل Verily, Allāh S is Ever-Ready to accept repentance during thenight so that the sinner of the day may repent; and He is EverReady to accept repentance during the day so that the sinner ofthe night may repent, (and this will continue) until the sun risesfrom the west.323Sunanut-Tirmidhī, kitāb: الدّعوات chapter: في فضل التّوبة و الإ ستغفار و ما ذکر من رحمة الله بعباده Ḥadīth: 3540Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim, kitāb: التّوبة chapter: قبول التّوبة من ال ّذنوب و إن تک ّررت ال ّذنوب و التّوبة Ḥadīth: 27598

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHThe Love of Allāh S for Those Who Repent‘Allāmah Ālūsī v has quoted another Al-Ḥadīthul-Qudsī in histafsīr where Allāh S says, َلأَنِ ْي ُن الْ ُم ْذنِ ِب ْي َن أَ َح ُّب إِلَ َّي ِم ْن َز ْجلِ الْ ُم َس َّب ِح ْي َن The whimpering of the sinful [when seeking forgiveness fromme] is more beloved to me than the humming of those whoglorify me.4There are two types of servants: the sinners and the pious. Thepious servants have no sins, so majority of the time, they engagein tasbīh and tahmīd – saying subḥānallāh, alḥamdulillah, etc. Onthe other hand, whenever the sinners turn to Allāh S, whether it bein Makkah Mukarramah or Madīnah Munawwarah, in the masjidduring the month of Ramaḍān or during auspicious programmessuch as these, they focus on their sins and excessively sayastaghfirullāh (I seek forgiveness from Allāh).Hence, we have the musabbiḥīn, i.e. pious people who aresaying subḥānallāh, and the sinners who are saying astaghfirullāh.Allāh S hears both groups, the musabbiḥīn and the sinners; andwhich is more beloved to Him? َلأَنِ ْي ُن الْ ُم ْذنِ ِب ْي َن أَ َح ُّب إِلَ َّي ِم ْن َز ْجلِ الْ ُم َس َّب ِح ْي َن The whimpering of the sinful [when seeking forgiveness fromme] is more beloved to me than the humming of those whoglorify me.5This is because the one who is saying subḥānallāh is elevating hisstatus, and the one who is saying astaghfirullāh is mending his45Rūḥul-Ma‘ānī, part 29, p.215Ibid9

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHrelationship with Allāh S which he had broken through sinning.He is returning to Allāh S.The Greatest Benefit of TawbahWe must remain firm on taqwā and never give up. If overcomeby Shayṭān, we leave the platform of taqwā, then we mustimmediately make tawbah. We should never think to ourselvesthat I sin and make tawbah but after a few days I sin again. I repentagain, but only remain firm for some days and I sin again. I keeprepenting and then failing; what is the point? No my friends, wemust never let this thought enter our minds as it is from Shayṭān.The more we repent, the more our stamina to resist sin increases.Every action we carry out has an effect on our spiritual life justas every food has an effect on our physical life. Everything we eathas an effect on our bodies, positive or negative. Similarly, goodactions have positive effects on our spiritual life and bad actionshave negative effects. Tawbah also has many effects. The greatesteffect of tawbah is that through tawbah, a person’s stamina toresist sins increases. A person who casts lustful glances fails tocontrol his gaze because he does not have the required stamina.After committing this sin, he repents and makes a firm resolutionto never commit this sin again; but as soon as he steps out onto thestreet, he casts a lustful glance. The resolution was not sufficientbecause he is weak. He repents again and after a further tenminutes, he commits the sin again. He repents again and repeatsthe same mistake. So every ten minutes or so he is committing thissin but immediately he repents sincerely, making a firm resolutionnever to commit the sin again. Within a week to ten days, he willfind that now he is able to resist this sin for thirty minutes. If hecontinues with tawbah, within a month he will find that now he is10

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHable to resist this sin for one hour. Before long, he will be able toresist for one day, then one week and then a month etc. He willsoon find that as a result of tawbah he now despises that sin. Thisis the greatest benefit of tawbah.Never Lose HopeThose who are pious should remain firm on taqwā. As for thosewho are weak, we must try our utmost to remain on taqwā, and ifwe fail, we must not lose hope; we must return to taqwā. Allāh Svery affectionately says,َّ َ َ َ ْ ُُ َْ ََّٰ َ ُّٰ َْ ٰ ُ َ ﺎﻋﺒﺎد ِي اﻟ ِﺬﻳْ َﻦ ا ْﺳ َﺮﻓ ْﻮا َﻋﻠﻰ اﻧﻔ ِﺴ ِ ْﻢ ﻟ ﺗﻘ َﻨﻄ ْﻮا ِﻣ ْﻦ ّر ْﺣ َﻤ ِﺔ اﻟﻠ ِﻪ ا ِّن اﻟﻠ َﻪ ِ ﻗﻞ ﻳ ََُُّْ ُ َُّْٗ ﻳَﻐ ِ ُﺮ اﻟﺬﻧ ْﻮ َب َﺟ ِﻤ ْﻴ ًﻌﺎ اِﻧﻪ ﻫ َﻮ اﻟﻐﻔ ْﻮ ُر ا ّﺮ ِﺣ ْ ُﻢ [O My messenger s!] Say, [that Allāh S is saying,] ‘O Myservants who have oppressed themselves! Do not lose hope in theMercy of Allāh S. Verily, Allāh forgives all sins. Surely, He isthe Ever-Forgiving, Most-Merciful.’ (39:53)Shayṭān Never Loses Hope, So Why Should We?When we repent my friends, whether it is a hundred times, athousand times or a hundred thousand times, does Shayṭān losehope? Does Shayṭān ever think that I made this person commita sin but he repented; I made him commit the sin again and herepented again; I made him commit the sin a third time but herepented again; what is the point? Does Shayṭān ever becomehopeless like we do? Does he ever think that I have beenmisleading this person for the last twenty years. Every year I makehim commit sins for eleven months; but then he always repents inthe month of Ramaḍān. Thus, all my efforts of eleven months goto waste. And because this has been happening for twenty years,11

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHwhat is the point? No, Shayṭān never loses hope.Despite knowing that he has everything to lose, he never loseshope. In tawbah we have everything to gain; then why should welose hope? If we repent after Shayṭān has made us sin for twentyyears, all his efforts go to waste. Thereafter, if Shayṭān entices usand we commit that same sin again, the sins of the twenty years donot return. What has been forgiven is forgiven. Therefore, Shayṭānhas everything to lose and we have everything to gain. Despitethat, he never loses hope; so why should we?The Example of Two FriendsLet me give you another example to illustrate the benefit oftawbah. Zayd and ‘Amr, who are both friends, leave home everyday at around 11pm and return at around 3am in the morning.Their parents are very unhappy because they are involved in vicesall night. When they return, something knocks at the door of theirconscience.Through the barakah of Īmān, any person, after committing asin, will find something knocking at the door of his conscience.My friends! Whenever we find something knocking at the door ofour conscience saying, ‘What you are doing is wrong; one day youwill have to die; you will have to stand in the Court of Allāh S;therefore repent!’ then know that Allāh S loves you and it is HeS Who is knocking at the door of our conscience.Zayd ignores the inner call of his conscience and ‘Amr paysattention and repents by saying, ‘O Allāh! I have repented. I willnot go with Zayd tomorrow. I will not commit any sin tomorrow.I have submitted myself to you.’12

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHTomorrow comes and when Zayd contacts him, overcome byShayṭān and nafs, he once again goes out with Zayd and repeatswhat he did the previous night. This cycle continues for thirtyyears. They both commit the same sins. They engage in the samedisobediences to Allah S. The only difference is that every nightwhen Allāh S knocks at the door of Zayd’s conscience, he ignores.And when Allāh S knocks at the door of ‘Amr’s conscience, hepays attention and says, ‘O Allāh! I have repented. Forgive me. Iwill not do it again.’Finally, after thirty years, they return from a very bad night.Again, Allāh S knocks at the doors of their consciences. Zaydignores but ‘Amr pays attention and says, ‘O Allāh! I haverepented again. Forgive me.’ That same night, both of them passaway. Due to continued tawbah, ‘Amr will stand in the Court ofAllāh S as a sinless person, whilst Zayd will come in the Court ofAllāh S as one who has been sinning for thirty years. Look at thebenefit of tawbah my friends.Shayṭān’s DeceitWe must never become hopeless. Shayṭān is very cunning. Whenthe opportunity arises to fulfil our unlawful desires and commitsins, Shayṭān whispers into our hearts, ‘Allāh S is Most-Forgivingand Most-Merciful; commit the sin, Allāh S will forgive you.’And once we have committed the sin, Shayṭān whispers, ‘Allāh Sis Shadīdul-‘Iqāb (Severe in punishment), He will never forgiveyou.’We should not fall into this trap of Shayṭān. When faced withunlawful passions, we should remind ourselves, ‘I cannot do thisas Allāh S is Shadīdul-‘Iqāb.’ If, overcome by the whispers of13

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHShayṭān, we commit a sin, then we should remind ourselves,‘Allāh S is Ghafūrur-Raḥīm (Ever-Forgiving, Most-Merciful), Ishould immediately repent and He will forgive my sins.’The Mercy of Allāh SMy friends! Allāh S loves His servants very much. This is whyHe created so many causes of forgiveness. Sins are forgiven onblessed nights, at blessed moments, because of good actions, etc.Allāhu Akbar! Allāh S looks for excuses to forgive us, not topunish us.ِ ر The Mercy of Allāh S looks for excuses [to forgive a person].The Angels on Our ShouldersLook at the Mercy of Allāh S. He S has appointed two angelswith every person to record his deeds – one to his right and theother to his left. Allāh S says,َ ُ َ َُ ََۡۡ َ ً َۡ﴾۱۲﴿ ﴾ ﻳ َ ۡﻌﻠ ُﻤ ۡﻮ َن َﻣﺎ ﺗﻔ َﻌﻠ ۡﻮ َن ۱۱ۙ﴿ َ اﻣﺎ ﻛﺎﺗِ ِﺒ ﴾ ﻛِﺮ ۱۰ۙ﴿ َ َو ا ِّن َﻋﻠ ۡﻴﻜ ۡﻢ ٰ ِﻔ ِﻈ Verily, there are guardians [appointed] over you. [They are]Noble and are recording [everything you do and say]. Theyknow what you do. (82:10-12)The one on the right is the leader. Whenever a person commits asin, the one on the left will only record that sin when he is grantedpermission by the one on the right. Nabī s says,ِ اح ُب ا ْل َي ِم ْينِ أَ ِم ْي ٌر علٰى َص ِ َص ، َف ِٕا َذا َع ِم َل الْ َع ْب ُد َح َس َن ًة أَ ْث َب َت َها ، اح ِب الشِّ َم ِال ِ َوإِ َذا َع ِم َل َس ِّي َئ ًة َقا َل َص ٍ اُ ْم َك ْث ِس َّت َسا َع : ِ اح ُب الْ َي ِم ْين َف ِٕا َذا ْاس َت ْغف ََر ، ات 14

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAH. لَ ْم ُي ْث ِب ْت َع َل ْي ِه َوإِ َّلا أَ ْث َب َت َع َل ْي ِه َس ِّي َئ ًة The angel on the right is a leader over the one on the left. Whenthe servant carries out a good deed, he records it. And when hecommits a sin, the one on the right says, ‘Wait for some time.’Then, if he (the servant) seeks forgiveness, then he (i.e. the angelon the left) will not record it; otherwise he will record the sin.6Allāh S has set some other principles too. Nabī s reports thatAllāh S says,، َف ِٕا ْن َع ِم َل َها ، َك َت َب َها الل ُه لَ ٗه ِع ْن َد ٗه َح َس َن ًة ك َِام َل ًة ، َف َم ْن َه َّم بِ َح َس َن ٍة َف َل ْم َي ْع َم ْل َها ٍ إِلٰى أَضْ َع ، إِلٰى َس ْب ِع ِمائَ ِة ِض ْع ٍف ، ات ٍ كُ ِت َب ْت لَ ٗه َعشَ َر َح َس َن َوإِ ْن ، اف َك ِث ْي َر ٍة َف ِٕا ْن َع ِم َل َها ، َك َت َب َها الل ُه لَ ٗه ِع ْن َد ٗه َح َس َن ًة ك َِام َل ًة ، ُه َو َه َّم بِ َس ِّي َئ ٍة َف َل ْم َي ْع َم ْل َها كُ ِت َب ْت لَ ٗه َس ِّي َئ ًة َو ِاح َد ًة Whoever resolves to carry out a good deed but could not carryit out (due to unexpected circumstances), Allāh S will recorda full reward for him. If he carries it out, then ten rewardswill be recorded for him up to seven hundred and much more(depending on the level of his sacrifice and sincerity). And ifhe resolves to commit a sin but abstains from it (due to fear ofAllāh S), Allāh will record a full reward for him. If he commitsthe sin then a single sin will be recorded for him.7Making Taqwā and Tawbah EasyMy brothers and sisters! Let us all make this resolution thatinshā’allāh, we will never disobey Allāh S from now. We have67Musnadush-Shāmiyyīn, Ḥadīth: 468Musnad Aḥmad, kitāb: ومن مسند بني هاشم chapter: مسند عبد الله بن ع ّباس بن عبدالمطّلب Ḥadīth: 340215

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHrepented and have made a firm resolution that we will never sin,and if we slip and make a mistake, then we will immediately repent.Alḥamdulillāh, we have now understood taqwā and tawbah (T &T), and we have resolved to remain firm on taqwā and tawbah.However, there still remains one question: How does one acquirethe ability to remain firm on taqwā and tawbah? The answer isvery simple: By continually contemplating on our ultimate returnto Allāh S and having to stand in His Court. Taqwā will becomeeasy for the one who continually contemplates that one day hewill have to return to Allāh S. Furthermore, if one slips, then thissame contemplation of having to stand in the Court of Allāh S andanswer for his sins will make tawbah easy.Standing in The Court of Allāh SIt is a reality that sooner or later we will return to Allāh S and aday will come when we will be recompensed for what we havedone. Allāh S says,َ ُْ َ ْ َ َ َْ َ ُّ ُ ّ ٰ َ ُ َّ ُ ّ ٰ َ ْ َ ْ ُ َ ْ ُ ً ْ َ ْ ُ َّ ََ ﻔ ﺲ ّﻣﺎ ﻛﺴﺒﺖ و ﻢ ﻟ ٍ واﺗﻘﻮا ﻳﻮﻣﺎ ﺗﺮﺟﻌﻮن ِﻓﻴ ِﻪ اِﻟﻰ اﻟﻠ ِﻪ ﺛﻢ ﺗﻮﻓﻰ ﻛﻞ ﻧ َ ْ ﻳُﻈﻠ ُﻤ ْﻮ َن Fear that day when you will be returned to Allāh S andthereafter each person will be repaid fully for whatever he haddone in this world; and they will not be oppressed. (2:281)َ َ ۡ ۡ َ ۡ َّ ۡ َ َٗ َ َّ ًّ َ َّ َ َ َ ۡ ۡ َ ۡ َّ ﴾ َو َﻣ ۡﻦ ۷﴿ؕ ﺎل َذ َّرة َﺧ ۡ ًﺮا ﻳَّ َﺮ ٗه ﻤﻦ ﻳﻌﻤﻞ ِﻣﺜﻘ ٍ﴾۸﴿٪ ﻳﻌﻤﻞ ِﻣﺜﻘﺎل ذر ٍة ﺮا ﻳﺮه Whoever does an atom’s weight of good will see it [on the Dayof Qiyāmah] and whoever does an atom’s weight of evil will seeit [on the Day of Qiyāmah]. (99:7-8)16

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHُ ََُْ َ ْ َ ْ َ َ ْ َّ ُ ََ ﺎه َﻃﺎۤﰱ َﺮ ٗه ْﻲ ُﻋ ُﻨ ِﻘ ٖﻪ َو ُ ْﺮ ُج ﻟ َ ٗﻪ ﻳ َ ْﻮ َم اﻟ ْ ِﻘ َﻴ ﺎﻣ ِﺔ ﻛِ َﺘﺎﺑًﺎ ﻳّﻠﻘﺎه ﺎن ا ﺰﻣﻨ ٍ وﻛﻞ ِا ﺴ ِ ُِِْ َﻣ ﺸ ْﻮ ًرا And We have tied every person’s [record of] actions to his neck;and on the Day of Qiyāmah we will take out for him a bookwhich he will find open before him. (17:13)Our Book of Deeds will be presented to us on the Day of Qiyāmahand we will be asked by Allāh S to read them. Allāh S will say,ْ َْٰ َْ َ َْ َ اِﻗ َﺮأ ﻛِ َﺘﺎﺑَﻚ ﻛﻔﻰ ﺑِ َﻨﻔ ِﺴﻚ اﻟ َﻴ ْﻮ َم َﻋﻠ ْﻴﻚ َﺣ ِﺴ ْﻴ ًﺒﺎ Read your own Book of Deeds. Today, you are enough as areckoner for yourself (17:14)Today nobody needs to reckon you. You are enough as a reckoner.This is your biography. Every deed you carried out is recorded inthis book, from puberty until your last breath. We will all readthrough our books and realise that each and every word and actionof ours has been recorded in them. We will totally agree witheverything written in the book and we will say,َ ۤ َّ ً ْ َ َ َ ً َْ َ َ ْ َ ٰ ََ ﺎب ﻟ ﻳُﻐﺎد ُِر َﺻ ِﻐ َﺮة ّوﻟ ﻛ ِﺒ َﺮة اِﻟ ا ْﺣ َﺼﺎﻫﺎ ِ ﺎل ﻫﺬا اﻟ ِ ﻜﺘ ِ ﻣ What kind of book is this! It has not missed anything, minor ormajor, but has recorded it (18:49)ََ َ ُ َ ْٓ َ َ َّ َ ْ ُّ ْ َ ْ ْ َ َ َّ ﻳ َ ْﻮ َم َﺠ ُﺪ ﻛ ُ ُّﻞ ﻧ َ ْﻔ ﺲ ﻣﺎ ﻋ ِﻤﻠﺖ ِﻣﻦ ﺧ ٍﺮ ًﺮا و َﻣﺎ ﻋ ِﻤﻠﺖ ِﻣ ْﻦ ُﺳ ْﻮ ٍء ﺗ َﻮ ّد ﻟ ْﻮ ا ّن ًٍِ ْ َ ً َ َ ٗ َ َْ َ َ َ َْ ﺑﻴﻨﻬﺎ وﺑﻴﻨﻪ اﻣﺪا ﺑ ِﻌﻴﺪا On the day when each person will see all his good deeds andall his bad deeds, [and when he will realise that his bad deedsfar outweigh his good deeds] he will wish that there was a longdistance between it (Qiyāmah) and himself (3:30)17

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHThe Day Will ComeMy friends, this day is going to come. ش َما ِشئ َْت َف ِٕانَّكَ َم ِّی ٌت ْ ِع Live for as long as you desire, (but remember that ultimately)you are going to die. َوأَ ْح ِب ْب َم ْن أَ ْح َب ْب َت َف ِٕانَّكَ َمفَا ِرقُ ٗه and love whomsoever you desire, (but remember that oneday) you will have to part ways.Love whomsoever you desire. Instead of loving Allāh S, instead ofloving His Rasūl s, instead of loving the pious, love whomsoeveryou desire; but remember that a day will come when you willseparate from the person. َوا ْع َم ْل َما ِشئ َْت َف ِٕانَّكَ َم ْج ِز ٌّي بِ ٖه Do whatever you desire, (but remember that) you will beretributed for (what you do).8My friends, if we continually remember that one day we will departfrom this world - maybe sooner rather than later - then the strengthand ability to remain on taqwā will be fortified; it will becomevery easy. Similarly, if we make a mistake, then the remembranceof death and the Hereafter will encourage us to make tawbah. Weneed to continually remind ourselves of this journey; that one day,ultimately, we have to return to Allāh S.Allāh S says three times in the Qur’ān,ْ ُ َ ۤ َ ْ َ ُّ ُ ﺲ ذاﰱِﻘﺔ اﻟ َﻤ ْﻮ ِت ٍ ﻛﻞ ﻧﻔ 8Al-Mustadrak ‘alaṣ-Ṣaḥīḥayn, kitāb: ال ّرقاق Ḥadīth: 792118

RETURNING BACK TO ALLĀH S THROUGH TAWBAHEach soul shall taste the taste of death. (3:185, 21:35, 29:57)Allāh S states in numerous places,ُ َ اِﻟ ْﻴ ِﻪ ﺗ ْﺮ َﺟ ُﻌ ْﻮ َن To Him you will be returned. (2:28;245, 10:56, 11:34,28:70;88, 29:17, 30:11, 36:22;83, 39:44, 41:21, 43:85)Allāh S also states,َُ ٗ َّ َ ُُ َ َّ َ ْ َ ْ ُ ﻗﻞ ا ِّن اﻟ َﻤ ْﻮت اﻟ ِﺬ ْي ﺗ ِ ّﺮ ْو َن ِﻣ ْﻨﻪ ﻓ ِﺎﻧﻪ ُﻣﻠ ِﻗ ْﻴﻜ ْﻢ Say, ‘Verily, the death that you are running away from willcertainly come and meet you.’ (62:8)ُ ْ ُّ ْ ْ ُ ُ َ َ َ َ اﻳْ ﻤﺎ ﺗﻜ ْﻮﻧ ْﻮا ﻳُﺪ ِرﻛﻜ ُﻢ اﻟ َﻤ ْﻮت Wherever you are, death will find you [at its appointed time].(4:78)A poet writes,ِ َيا َغ ِاف َل الْ َق ْل ِب َع ْن ِذ ْك ِر الْ َم ِن َّي ات O the one with a heart that has become negligent of rememberingdeath!The heart becomes negligent first and once the heart becomesnegligent, every limb of the body becomes negligent. Similarly,if negligence is removed from the heart and it is enlightened withdhikr (remembrance of Allāh S), then every limb of the bodybecomes dhākir. And when the limbs become dhākir, the bodybecomes dhākir. A dhākir body can never disobey Al

Collectively make tawbah to Allāh S so that you may acquire falāḥ [of this world and the Hereafter]. (24:31) The one who repents also becomes the beloved of Allāh S, Âَْ Èِﺑاﻮَّﺘﻟاَّﺐُّ ßُِ çﻪَّٰﻠﻟانَّاِ Verily, Allāh S loves those who are most repenting. (2:22