There are many ways to actualise sincerity from them are the following,
(1) A person recognises the reality and status of this worldly life, it’s passing by and will not last.
(2) That it is has no value in reality.
(3) That a person remembers death frequently.
(4) He remembers the purpose for his creation.
(5) He ponders upon the names and attributes of Allah, he recognises and affirms that Allah is Al-‘Aleem He knows all, he has the Muraaqabah of Allah, meaning he is aware that Allah knows, hears and sees everything he does.
(6) He works towards rectifying his sincerity and realises it is from the highest levels of worship.
(7) There is no arrival to paradise except by the Pleasure of Allah.
There are many affairs and means which will aid a person rectify his sincerity and these are from them.
Shaykh Abu Abdillah Khalid Adh-Dhufayri (hafidahullah) (1st March 2020)
It is imperative that the caller to Allah is foremost at acting upon that which he calls to – from adhering to the commands of Allah and steering clear of His prohibitions, and that he follows Allah’s Messenger (sallallaahu alaihi wa salam) in belief; worship; interactions; manners and conduct outwardly and inwardly.
Verily some prominent Arabs were asked regarding the reason for their accepting of Islam.
The reply was, “Indeed I found that Muhammad (sallallaahu alaihi wa salam) did not call to anything except that he was the first to implement it, and he did not prohibit anything except that he was the first to avoid it.”
So when a caller takes the Noble Messenger (sallallaahu alaihi wa salam) as an example (in all affairs), his call becomes pure and sincere, then the means to [convincing] the hearts are made available, then the attentive ears listen and pay attention; the good souls accept it; and the blessed limbs act upon it –those limbs that received its guidance through flourishing hearts that have been given life and illuminated with the light of true belief whose righteous effects manifest upon the limbs, and thus they are constantly submissive to Allah, The Lord of all that Exists.
Verily, we all know that the intent of knowledge is action. Because knowledge is a means and action is the fruits. And if a person does not benefit with his knowledge, then an ignoramus is better than him. And many knowledge based issues are understood by most students, however they do not carry them out, whether it was in (issues of) worship, or dealings with the creation. And this there is no doubt is a deficiency; a deficiency, and a reason for deficiency, meaning deficiency in knowledge. For if a person was to act by his knowledge he benefits and his knowledge increases. So, whoever acts by that which he has learnt, then Allāh will forgive him for that which he did not know.
I pray, however I (still) perform some evil actions; so, what is your advice for me? And why does my prayer not prevent me from forbidden actions?
Shaykh Uthaymeen Replies:
My advice for you is that you repent to Allah (The Mighty and Majestic) and that you sincerely draw close to Allah. (Likewise) that you recall the greatness of the one you have disobeyed and recall His punishment (The Mighty and Majestic), for whoever opposes his command.
Declare (O Muhammad SAW) unto My slaves, that truly, I am the Oft-Forgiving, the Most-Merciful. (49) And that My Torment is indeed the most painful torment. (50)
So, seek Allah’s forgiveness and mercy and fear his punishment. As for your situation, i.e. that you pray and you prayer does not prevent you from evil actions, then perhaps your prayer has deficiencies, because the prayer which prevents from fahshaa (i.e. great sins) and munkar (everything Islam rejects & has prohibited) is the complete prayer, (meaning) the prayer which is (performed) in accordance to that which the Messenger of Allah came with; with presence of heart, performing the actions (of the prayer) as they were reported in the sunnah. It is not every prayer which prevents from fahshaa (i.e. great sins) and munkar (every thing Islam censures & has forbidden ), rather it is the established prayer (in the sunnah) which the people perform in the manner which is befitting.
Recite (O Muhammad (sallallaahu alaihi wa salam) what has been revealed to you of the Book (the Qur’ân), and perform As-Salât (Iqamât¬as¬Salât). Verily, As-Salât (the prayer) prevents from Al-Fahshâ’ (i.e. great sins of every kind, unlawful sexual intercourse) and Al-Munkar (i.e. disbelief, polytheism, and every kind of evil wicked deed).
Meaning, the prayer which is performed in the correct manner (according to the sunnah of the Messenger of Allah), prevents these evils.
(1) The questioner is alluding to this aayah in the Quran: Al-Ankaboot: 45
Contemplating Consequences before Speaking and Acting – Shaykh al-Uthaymīn
If one of you wishes to say something, then let him weigh up his speech. Ponder what is the outcome, if the outcome is good proceed and do not waver or hesitate. And if the result is evil, then withhold and leave it.
The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said:
“من كان يؤمن بالله و اليوم الآخر فليقل خير أو ليصمت” Whoever believes in Allāh and the Last Day then let him speak good or remain silent. (Muslim & Bukhāri)
When one of you wants to carry out an action, then ponder [whether] performing it is good or [whether it is] good to leave? If leaving it is what is good, then leave it. If performing it is what is good, then ponder whether it will it divert you from something better or more important!
If it will busy you from that which is better or more important, then leave it, because it’s impossible that one with sound intellect will [deliberately] busy himself with something virtuous, [even though it is less virtuous at that specific time and/or place] than something greater in virtue, because this leads one to lose the virtue of the act that is more virtuous.
Reflect on the rapid passing of the nights and days, indeed this is your life (passing you by). These (night and days) are the deposit boxes of your actions. On the day of resurrection these boxes will be opened. The believer will find in his boxes, honour and nobility, whilst the negligent find in their boxes, humiliation and degradation.
Therefore, fill these boxes with the taqwa of Allah (subhānahu) and righteous actions before (these boxes) are closed due to the end of your life.