In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy
If someone said, “Clarify the ugly traits of the soul for me”; so it is said to him, “They are traits that may have already settled in the soul and it does not love to be separated from them. They are numerous traits and if a person examines his soul he might find them as well.
- Indeed, it is a soul that follows [evil or excess] desires and is engaged in the [evil or excess] pleasures of the worldly life.
- Has prolonged hope for that which is shot lived and does not show little concern for a lifespan that will inevitably come to an end.
- It has a fervent desire to love this worldly life and when it loves it [by preferring it over the afterlife], the heart becomes hard and turns away from an abode whose bliss will never come to an end [i.e. paradise].
- It loves traits which it knows will harm it tomorrow.
- It laughs and rejoices, enjoys itself with that which its Lord has forbidden.
- It grieves – morning and evening – for that which was not decreed for it of those things it hopes for from the worldly life.
- It is a soul facilitated with ease to seek after the [good] things of the worldly life.
- It finds enjoyment in falling short in good deeds which its Lord calls to [or commands].
- It has a desire to spend wealth in obedience to Allaah, but Satan threatens it with poverty, so it inclines towards that which Satan calls to.
- Allaah promises it forgiveness and bounty, but it neither has certainty about it nor pleased with it.
- It has firm hope in the promises of the people, but reluctant when the threat of its Lord reaches it.
- It pleases the people at the expense of Allaah’s anger and hesitates to please its Lord.
- Allaah calls it to have patience during calamities – a means of consolation and means to solace, but it does not accept.
- It pretends in the presence of the people that it fulfils obligations, but fulfils little of that which Allaah obligates on it.
- It abandons disobedience after being able to do so out of being shy of the people, but has little shyness whilst Allaah [The Most Great] watches it.
- It gives little thanks to the innumerable blessings of Allaah.
- It utilises the blessings of Allaah [The Most Generous] – day and night – as an aid to disobey Him.
- It finds it easy to sit with idle people, but finds it difficult to sit with the scholars.
- It obeys [or follows] a deceiver, but disobeys the most sincere advisers.
- It hastens to evil desires, but delays repentance today and tomorrow.
Abu Bakr Muhammad Ibn Al-Hasan [rahimahullaah] said, ‘Whoever realises these traits in his soul and other than them, he should hasten to discipline it through good behaviour in order to return it to that which is more worthy regarding fear of Allaah [The Mighty and Majestic]- in private and public – having great regret, refrain from the repugnant traits which he knows for sure is with him and continue upon rectification throughout his lifespan'”. And Allaah is the Bestower of this affair. [End of quote: An Excerpt from Adabun Nufoos, page 3. Slightly paraphrased]
Allaahul Musta’aan! We ask Allaah for forgiveness and that He never leaves us to our souls in the twinkling of an eye Aameen.