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Two Types of Hearts During Fitan [Trials, Tribulations, Temptations]

In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy.

Al-Allaamah Rabee Bin Haadee Al-Mad’khalee [may Allaah preserve him] stated:

Let us increase in obedience to (Allaah), let us be mindful of Shubuhaat (i.e. affairs that are made to resemble the truth but are falsehood in reality) and Shahawaat (i.e. vain or impermissible desires), because indeed indeed the Fitan (trials, tribulations, temptations) will be exposed to the hearts. Hudhaifah [may Allaah be pleased with him] reported from Allaah’s Messenger [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him] who said, “The Fitan will be presented to the hearts of the people like a reed mat woven stick by stick, and any heart afflicted by them will have a black mark put into it, but any heart that rejects them will have a white mark put into it. Thus there will be two kinds of hearts: one is pure like a white gemstone and it will not be harmed by any tribulation as long as the heavens and earth endure, and the other is black and dusty like a worn-out vessel, neither recognizing good nor rejecting evil, but rather immersed in its desires”. [Saheeh Muslim’ Number 144]

The first type of heart is pure like a white gemstone and it will not be harmed by any tribulation as long as the heavens and earth endure. That is because Allaah grants them firmness and not due to their own power or strength; rather Allaah grants them firmness. ” Allah will keep firm those who believe, with the word that stands firm in this world (i.e. they will keep on worshipping Allah Alone and none else), and in the Hereafter]. [Surah Ibraaheem’ Aayah 27]  Allaah bestows His favour upon them by granting them firmness, so they are not harmed regardless the greatness of the Fitan.

Let me give an example: I say, indeed amongst the people in the midst of these Fitan – just as Allaah’s Messenger described the situation- are those who are firm like mountains- the winds, floods, hurricanes and storms come along, but they do not shake, because the faith in the hearts (of these people) is like the firm mountains. Allaah keeps them away from the Fitan and makes them firm, so they are not harmed. However, there are other people who are like the trees that are moved -by the wind- to the right and the left until they finally fall. And there are others who are like feathers and the Henna leaves- flying along with the Fitan when little Fitna occurs, such as when a mild wind (blows) the fragile leaves to a far off place. We ask Allaah to keep us firm.

The second type of heart is described (as follows), “Black and dusty like a worn out vessel, neither recognizing good nor rejecting evil, but rather immersed in its desires”. This is the state of the one whose heart is immersed in Fitnah, agrees with it and does not reject it, so the Fitnah enters him gradually until his heart is worn-out and thus becomes black like a worn out vessel – a vessel whose mouth is turned upside down, so regardless the amount of water, butter fat and other things one attempts to pour it will not accept anything. Indeed, we have often experienced the affair of this category of people – whose hearts are worn out and regardless the proofs and evidences – from the Qur’aan and Sunnah – presented to nullify their falsehood, they do not accept that from you. This has to be the case because indeed Allaah’s Messenger described such a person as one with a heart that is similar to a worn out vessel – a heart that neither recognises truth nor rejects evil; rather it is immersed in its desires. Whatever agrees with his desires, he accepts it – not because it is the truth, but rather only because it agrees with his desires. This (behaviour) is similar to that of the Yahood [i.e. those Yahood who rejected the clear message of the final Messenger], because they know the truth, but wage war against it – accept what agrees with their desires and reject what opposes their desires and wage war against it. This is something rife in this era amongst those whose hearts are worn out and thus they reach this state that has been described by Allaah’s Messenger. It is as if we are witnessing this affair whilst Allaah’s Messenger describes these people -in our presence- and we can see their deeds and dishonourable stances. (1)

Supplication of The Morning and Evening – Before Sunrise and Before Sunset

يَا حَيُّ يَا قَيُّومُ بِرَحْمَتِكَ أَسْتَغيثُ أَصْلِحْ لِي شَأْنِيَ كُلَّهُ وَلاَ تَكِلْنِي إِلَى نَفْسِي طَرْفَةَ عَيْنٍ

O Ever Living! O The Self Subsisting, Upon Whom Everything Depends! By Your mercy I seek assistance; rectify for me all of my affairs and do not leave me to myself, even for the blink of an eye. [Imaam Albaani declared it Hasan in Silsilah As-Saheehah Number 227]

Imaam Ibnul Qayyim [may Allaah have mercy upon him] said:

The most perfect (person) is that one who is more perfect in his servitude (to Allaah), the greatest in his acknowledgement of his poverty, dependence and neediness (in the presence of Allaah). He never (considers himself) self-sufficient in the presence of his Lord in the twinkling of an eye, and that is why one of the supplications of the Prophet is that he is used to say: [أَصْلِحْ لِي شَأْنِيَ كُلَّهُ وَلاَ تَكِلْنِي إِلَى نَفْسِي طَرْفَةَ عَيْنٍ – rectify for me all of my affairs and neither leave me to myself, even for the blink of an eye, nor to anyone among your creation]. And he used to supplicate saying: [يَا مُقَلِّبَ ٱلْقُلُوبَ ثَبِّتْ قَلْبِي عَلَى دِينِكَ – O Turner of the hearts! Keep my heart firm upon Your Religion].

He knew that his heart is in the control of Allaah’s Hand and he has no control over it, and that Allaah alternates it (i.e. alternates it from one state to another) how He pleases. (2)

Imaam Muhammad Ibn Saaleh Al-Uthaymeen [may Allaah have mercy upon him] said:

And when it is the case that the (firmness of the Messenger) is dependent on Allaah’s bestowal of that firmness, then how about us – the ones weak in their faith and certainty, whilst we are openly exposed to affairs of falsehood that are made to resemble the truth and lowly desires. Therefore, we are in great danger and we are obligated to ask Allaah for firmness upon the truth and that He does not cause our hearts to deviate (i.e. due to our own faults, sins and transgressions). [رَبَّنَا لَا تُزِغۡ قُلُوبَنَا بَعۡدَ إِذۡ هَدَيۡتَنَا وَهَبۡ لَنَا مِن لَّدُنكَ رَحۡمَةً‌ۚ إِنَّكَ أَنتَ ٱلۡوَهَّابُ – Our Lord! Let not our hearts deviate (from the truth) after You have guided us, and grant us mercy from You. Truly, You are the Bestower]. (3)


[Ref 1: An Excerpt from ‘Marhaban Yaa Taalibal Ilm’. pages 206-208]
[Ref 2: An Excerpt from ‘Tareeq Al-Hijratayn pages 25-26]
[Ref 3: An Excerpt from ‘Sharh Mumti’ 5/388]