Du`aa’ against insinuations

Question: Is there any authentic Du`aa’ (supplication) reported from the Prophet (peace be upon him) regarding people who suffer from devilish whisperings, obsessions, and impatience?

Answer: Such people should mention Allaah frequently and seek refuge with Him from Satan. Al-Bukhaaree, Muslim and others narrated on the authority of Aboo Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said… read more here.

Insinuations of apostasy

Question: I hope you will read my letter in its entirety so that you can understand my following inquiries: When is a person considered as an apostate – we seek refuge in Allaah (from this)? My question may appear strange, but it confuses me a lot. Sometimes I have insinuations that give me a feeling that some of my actions denote apostasy, I seek refuge in Allaah (from this). I would like to inform you that my heart is at rest with eemaan (Faith), Praise be to Allaah, but as I have mentioned I have doubts regarding every act I do even before I do it. For example, if I speak with one or more persons; before uttering a word, I have doubts that what I will say may be a statement of Kufr (disbelief), I seek refuge in Allaah. Thus, I become hesitant and begin to stutter. Sometimes, I continue to talk and do not have the chance to reconsider whether to utter a word or not; I find myself making statements involuntarily without intending Kufr, I seek refuge in Allaah. Thereafter, I am attacked by thoughts as to whether or not I have become an apostate because of this. Some of the things that reinforce my insinuations are that people I talk to always stare at me expecting me to continue (talking). I find this a very weak excuse and so my doubts keep growing.

In spite of this, I feel I will never abandon this religion, regardless of the punishment that might be inflicted upon me; but I cannot understand what happens to me while I am talking. It is such an odd and painful feeling that I sometimes cannot sleep. When I try to ignore it, I cannot, and the thoughts return. Should I bathe as one does upon first embracing Islaam. Will my prayers not be valid unless I bathe? Will all my previous good deeds be nullified like an apostate person? Should I perform Hajj again, for instance? Also, I sometimes feel angry and stressed when I find myself directed toward certain thoughts – I cannot mention them – but quickly I manage to control myself and try to get rid of these thoughts. Is this considered Kufr, I seek refuge in Allaah?

I would also like to say that I read a Hadeeth that implies that if a Muslim charges his Muslim brother with Kufr, it will fall upon one of them. Does this mean that when a Muslim charges another with Kufr, he himself is a Kaafir (disbeliever), i.e. An apostate? What if I feel that someone is Kaafir without declaring it? Is believing in superstitions – such as believing in the unluckiness of the number 13 or believing in a bad omen from throwing nails on the ground – considered Kufr, given that the one who does this is a Muslim and believes in what Muhammad (peace be upon him) has come with? And if the person repents from this and no longer believes in them (superstitions), will his case be the same as one who enters Islaam? In other words, should he or she bathe?

A further question: Are doubts and insinuations in oneself considered a sin no matter how far they have gone? Given that I sometimes spend a long time trying to ward them (insinuations) off, I will not elaborate any further. To sum up, When is a person considered apostate?

I do not want to ask how an apostate be recognized, rather I would like to know how apostasy can be recognized in oneself? I seek refuge in Allaah (from this). Does an apostate take the same ruling as a Kaafir with regard to bathing when entering Islaam, even if he has had sexual intercourse or a wet dream during the period of apostasy? One more question: Hajj is an obligation that is performed once in lifetime, except in case of apostasy (I seek refuge in Allaah from this), are there other cases where a Muslim is obliged to perform Hajj again?

Answer: First: There are many reasons that make one’s religion null and void. They are explained by scholars in their discussion of the ruling on an apostate. If someone leaves Islaam and then re-embraces it, their good deeds performed while being a Muslim will not be annulled… read more here.

Remedy of pride and Riyaa’

Question: When I do a good deed, I find a devilish insinuation for fame and being praised by people. However, I remember Allaah quickly and seek refuge with Him from Riyaa’ (showing-off) until this insinuation goes away. Does Allaah hold me accountable for such involuntary insinuations? Is this due to lack of Eemaan (faith)? What shall I do?

Answer: If the case is as you have mentioned; that you have insinuations, dismiss them as soon as possible, and seek refuge with Allaah from them and from the evil of Satan, we hope that Allaah… read more here.

Treatment of the whisperings of Satan while offering Salaah

Question: How can I get rid of the whispering of Satan during Salaah (Prayer)?

Answer: Do not follow the whispering of Satan in Salaah, but ignore it and busy yourself with contemplating the Qur’aan you are reciting and the greatness of Allaah while pronouncing Takbeer (saying: “Allaahu Akbar [Allaah is the Greatest]”), Tasbeeh (saying: “Subhaan Allaah [Glory be to Allaah]”) and Tahmeed (saying: “Al-hamdu lillaah [All praise is due to Allaah]”) while standing, bowing, prostrating, sitting to pronounce Tashahhud (testification recited in the sitting position in the second/last unit of Prayer) and all the sayings and deeds of Salaah.… read more here.

Self insinuations

Question: I am a nineteen-year-old man. Praise be to Allaah, I offer Salaah (Prayer) congregationally at the Masjid (mosque), even Fajr (Dawn) Prayer. Sometimes, I pronounce the Athaan (call to Prayer), and I have memorized six parts of the Qur’aan. However, there is something which bothers me; when I sit alonein my room, or when I sleep, I imagine that I have traveled to London and committed Zinaa (sexual intercourse outside marriage) there with immoral girls. Am I considered to be a sinner?

This does not affect me to the extent of masturbation, except rarely. However, I am afraid that the Hadeeth which implies that if a person’s Salaah does not prohibit them from committing evil, Allaah will not accept them, applies to me.

Answer: First: A Muslim is not accountable for obsessions and self-talk, as it is authentically reported that the Messenger of Allaah (peace be upon him) said: Allaah forgave my people the evil promptings which arise within their hearts, as long as they do not speak about them or act upon them. Second: Masturbation is Haraam (prohibited).… read more here.

Doubting that a person’s good deeds are out of showing off

Question: I intend to pray, fast, recite the Qur’aan and strive hard to implement the obligations of the Qur’aan and Sunnah, but sometimes I feel I am doing this to gain people’s admiration, so I quit doing some good deeds out of fear. How can I get rid of this feeling?

Answer: You have to carry out the rituals of Islaam in obedience to Allaah’s orders and seeking reward from Him… read more here.

Getting rid of Riyaa’

Question: Someone wants to learn and work according to what they learn and teach others. They fear that this may lead them to Riyaa’ (showing-off ). Thus, they abstain from teaching others. However, they remember the Hadeeth of the Prophet (peace be upon him) where he threatens those who conceal knowledge. What should they do? What should a person do in order to differentiate between what is done for the sake of Allaah and what is done for fame and ostentation? How can a person get rid of Riyaa’? What should someone do to be sincere in their deeds?

Answer: You should be sincere to Allaah in seeking, applying, spreading and teaching knowledge. You have to do so for the sake of Allaah Alone and the Hereafter. Do not do so for the sake of praise and commendation… read more here.

Expressing pride in being knowledgeable to others

Question: What is the ruling on expressing pride in being knowledgeable to others?

Answer: It is not permissible to do so. Seeking, publishing and debating about knowledge should be for the sake of Allaah Alone… read more here.

Swearing by other than Allaah

Question: Some Muslims I know jokingly utter some phrases which the monotheistic creed clearly states that they involve Shirk (associating others with Allaah in His Divinity or worship), such as saying “By my mother’s head” or “Praise be to Allaah and to master Daawood.” Are they held accountable for the literal meaning of their utterances?

Answer: It is not permissible to swear oaths by other than Allaah such as saying, “By my mother’s head”… read more here.

Striving to follow Allaah’s Orders and abstaining from His Prohibitions

Question: How can a Muslim be sure that their deeds are performed with the required sincerity for Allaah (Exalted be He), to avoid them reproaching themselves too much? Doing this persistently can lead to invoking the evil insinuations that Islaam prohibits. In his treatises, Imaam Ibn Rajab recognized different conditions in relation to this issue. He said: “This is a subtle form of Riyaa’ (showing-off) that is only recognized by those who are protected by Allaah.” Is it then obligatory for us to stop reading about issues that make us upset and confused, and if so, what is the substitute? Is paying careful attention to obedience crucial for preserving sincerity?

Answer: Muslims should do their utmost to comply with Allaah’s Commands and to avoid His Prohibitions, hoping for His Reward and fearing His Punishment. If they are in doubt regarding any of their religious affairs, they should seek the help of knowledgeable scholars, because Allaah (Exalted be He) says… read more here.

Refraining from a deed because of people out of the fear of Riyaa’

Question: Al-Fudayl ibn `Iyyaad (may Allaah be merciful to him) said, “Refraining from doing a deed because of people is Riyaa’ (showing-off) and doing a deed because of them is Shirk (associating others with Allaah in His Divinity or worship).” Many of my Muslim brothers and I sometimes feel obliged to refrain from some supererogatory acts of `Ibaadah (worship), fearing Fitnah (trials) to ourselves, being beaten, or being insulted; or that our Muslim brothers in general will be subjected to Fitnah by the government tightening its grip around them. By Allaah! I ask you, have we, as a consequence, fallen into Riyaa’ and if this is the case, what is the way out?

Answer: The second part of the statement of Al-Fudayl, namely, that doing a deed because of people is Shirk, is absolutely true, as the evidence from the Qur’aan and Sunnah shows the obligation of sincerity in `Ibaadah that should be for Allaah Alone and the prohibition of Riyaa’, called Al-Shirk Al-Asghar (minor form of associating others in worship with Allaah) by the Prophet (peace be upon him). He declared it as being the thing he fears most for his Ummah… read more here.

I do not want to memorize Qur’aan because of fearing of falling into Riyaa’ (showing-off)

Question 108: I love to recite and memorize the Qur’aan but whenever I remember Riyaa’ (showing-off), I fear to commit it, so I stop memorizing for fear of that. Could you kindly advise?

Answer: Seek Allaah’s Help, be sincere to Allaah, and start memorizing the Book of Allaah without hesitation. Resist and ward off Waswasah (insinuating thoughts from Satan), for they are tricks that frustrate and drive people away from doing good deeds... read more here.