Luqman and his words of wisdom - Part 3

My son! I have lifted iron and stone and all heavy things and have been able to bear their weight but have not found anything heavier than an evil neighbour. I have tasted bitter things but have not found anything more bitterly than restlessness and need for others.
It is mentioned in another hadith that Luqman said, O my son! Make a thousand friends because even a thousand friends are less but do not make even one enemy because even one enemy is sufficient.

It is recorded from same Imam in another hadith that ‘Ali said, “One of the admonitions of Luqman to his son is:
The one whose faith in Allah’s attribute of being the Provider is less, must take a lesson of advice and the one who is weak in asking provision from the Almighty must take a lesson of advice because it is only Allah who brought him from non-existence into existence and gave him provision in three states and there was no source of getting provision whatsoever in any of the said three states. So he much have rest assured that He will provide him maintenance in the fourth state of his life also. One of the above mentioned three states is when he was in the womb of his mother. It was only Allah who provided him sustenance and sheltered him in a restful place where he suffered neither heat nor cold. In another state he was brought out of his mother’s womb by Allah and he provided his provision of milk from his mother’s breast. It was a pure and clean and enough for him in that state. Allah nourished and raised him in that state wherein there was no other source of nourishment and training, no strength for earning and no power of warding off harms.

The third state was when his milk supply ended. Then he was provided maintenance through his parent’s earnings that spent on him with maximum love and pleasure and compassion, so much so that sometimes they gave him preference over themselves. This continued until he grew up and got enough strength and intelligence to earn his provision himself. Then he himself made things difficult for him by entertaining undesirable thoughts about his Lord and did not spend for fulfilling and observing the rights of Allah and began to give less to his family members fearing loss of wealth thereby losing faith in Allah. This was despite the fact that Allah always rewards him for spending in His path both in this world and in Hereafter. So bad indeed is such a slave.”

My son! Everything has a sign by which it is recognized. That sign gives witness for that thing. So religion too has three signs: Faith (Iman), Knowledge (Ilm) and Deeds (A’mal). Faith has three signs: Testifying of Allah’s Books. Knowledge also has three signs: Knowing his Lord, ascertaining what his Lord likes and what He dislikes. Again there are three signs of the one who acts according to his Knowledge: Daily prayers, fasts and Zakat poor tax. Also there are three signs of a man who closes the door of knowledge for himself and does not become learned: He quarrels with one who is wiser than him, mentions things which are higher than his level of intelligence though he acts against it, oppresses the weak and assists the oppressors. And there are three sings of the hypocrites: His tongue does not corroborate his heart, his heart does not corroborate his character and his outward appearance is different from his inner self.

There are three signs of a sinner: He embezzles people’s wealth, tells lies and acts contrary to his words. There are three signs of ostentation: He is slack in his worship while he is alone but makes a show of full attentiveness in worship while in public and he does it so that people may praise him. The envious has also three signs: He backbites people and flatters them on the face, feels happy when people are in trouble. There are three sings of extravagant: He eats things which are beyond his capacity and so also he wears likewise, and he feeds others crossing his limits of capacity. There are three signs of an indolent: He is slack in doing good deeds and he postpones good deeds until and unless he is threatened and he becomes so lazy that the job is spoiled and thus he becomes a defaulter. There are three signs of a negligent man: He is doubtful in his worship, becomes careless in matter of remembering his Lord and he forgets good deeds.

O my son! Do not ask for things which are not within your power and for which you do not have sources and leave aside things which you can achieve and for which you have resources so that you opinion may not falter and your wisdom may not go waste.

My son! Confront your enemy by giving up the prohibited, help yourself by achieving grace in your religion through magnanimity. Keep your soul clean of Allah’s disobedience. Keep your secrets hidden and your inner self, pure. When you will do so you will due to Allah’s secret, (will) have no fear of your enemy becoming aware of your weakness and defect. Do not become fearless (careless) of the enemy’s conspiracies, lest he finds you unaware and overpowers you and then there will be no excuse. You should always show him your happiness.

 

PART FOUR TO BE CONTINUED INSHA’ALLAH