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Hold yourselves to account before you are held to account

Posted: 24 Nov 2009 09:27 AM PST


The believer is the on who is continuously questioning his soul and holding it to account for every word, movement and moment of rest. What did I hope for from it? And what did I desire by it?


May Allâh show mercy to Al-Hasan al-Basrî who said: “You will not find a believer except that he is (constantly) holding his soul to account. What did I intend with that word of mine? What did I intend with my food? What did I intend with my drink?”


Imâm Ahmad wrote: “The intelligent person is the one who controls his own soul (calls it to account) and acts (in preparation) for what comes after death...”, and what is after death? After death is the barzakh. After death there is accountability and punishment. After death are the Scales (upon which the deeds are weighed) and the Sirât (the bridge over Hellfire) and then it is either Paradise or Hellfire. So what have we prepared for what comes after death?! “...and the incapable person is the one who makes his soul follow its whim and has many expectations from Allâh.”


Such a person is the one who says ‘Allâh will forgive me, Allâh will show mercy upon me’, he covets all these things from Allâh and yet he does not perform the righteous actions and falls into many sins and acts of disobedience. Righteous actions are one of the means of entering Paradise. It is not sufficient for someone to have expectations (from Allâh) without making some effort and sacrifice and striving with his soul to perform righteous actions. Allah(SWT) frequently links îmân with righteous actions and it is also one of the ways of entering into Paradise. We ask Allâh to grant us His Gardens.


Umar ibn al-Khattâb said: “Call your souls to account before you are called to account and weigh your souls (i.e. your actions) before you are weighed for it will make the accountability easier for you tomorrow if you call your selves to account today” [Reported by Ahmad in his Musnad]


Mâlik ibn Dînâr (rh) said: “May Allâh show mercy to a servant who said :’Are you not the perpetrator of this action? Are you not the perpetrator of that action? Then he rebukes it, strikes it and confines it to the Book of Allâh and is becomes its master and guide.’”


How many souls are their who control and lead their owners into the darkness and then into destruction and refuge is sought from Allâh! Let a person therefore, be the leader, the commander and the forbidder of his soul and not the soul of him.


And Al-Hasan (rh) said: “A believer is a guardian over his soul. He calls his soul to account for the sake of Allâh. The reckoning on the Day of Judgement will be light upon a people who call themselves to account in the world and the reckoning on the Day of Judgement will be hard on a people who take this matter lightly.”


And Ibn Kathîr (rh) said: “The believer (constantly) returns to his soul (holding it to account) so he says: ‘What did I intend by this action? What is for me and what is for it? By Allâh I shall never return to it.’ If it is an act of disobedience for example, it is a way of guarding his soul. He asks it constantly and calls it to account with an intense and hard reckoning in this world so that the reckoning on the Day of

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