Sunday, May 23, 2010

Good intentions | Multiple intentions


Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullah.
For the past 48 hours I could not help but think of the kind hearted visitors who might have come by Lisan al-Din and not find any postings. May Allah bless you for your husnul-zan. I have been struggling with time. Just so you know, yesterday and today, I was with a group of mudarris learning 'Digital Story Telling'. Mudarrris if you recall from an earlier posting, is one who teaches you a skill. I will post a Digital Story on Lisan al-Din someday InshaAllah. Well, that's one intention for His record, bi-iznillah.

Coming back to my guilt about my inability to keep up with daily postings - let me tell you yet again that two key people who had inspired me to start Lisan al-Din were Shaykh Ahmad Mustafa al-Alawi (1869 - 1934) and Shaykh Sidi Ahmad Zarruq (1442 -1493).  Sidi Ahmad Zarruq was known to have produced plenty of wonderful writings. It was said that on average he had written half a page a day, throughout his entire life. So I naively thought of posting half a page a day. Well that is just an intention (niyyat).

Now that brings me to what I wanted to blog about yesterday - what Shaykh Fahmi Zamzam had said about the significance of multiplying one's niyyat. This was during his monthly lecture at KL Ba'alawi on Kitab al-targhib wat tarhib.

He said:
It is important that when you make an intention, you set your intention for Allah's sake and for akhira. Because if you do something with akhira in mind, you will actually get both - dunya and akhira. On the other hand, if you make an intention only for dunya sake, all that you will end up getting is for dunya only. The problem is people have become secular. Dunya and akhira have been secularized or separated. But in actual fact, as true Muslims you should believe that they are not. Moreover, you should give emphasis on akhira because by doing that, you would actually reap benefit for dunya as well.

So be sure to relate all your intentions to akhira. [For example, you want to work and earn a living because Allah wants you to, so you will not be questioned later on for being lazy, for not using the blessings of good health, or for not fulfilling your duty to provide for your family. That person's intention differs from one who wants to work because he wants to make plenty of money to buy expensive cars and homes etc so that he would be considered as being successful. That intention stops at dunya.]

People actually do just about the same things. People work, do this, do that, we put in almost the same amount of effort, but notice that our intentions vary. Know that we are being judged for our intentions. Innamal aqmalu bin niyyat although many people tend to focus more on their deeds/efforts rather than their intentions. So be sure to make the right intention. But not just that, you should also try to make multiple intentions.

For example, when you decide to come to this majlis ilm, do not limit youself to just one niyyat. Generally, people's intention when they go to majlis 'ilm is because it's good to do so. You should be more specific in making your intention. You should set several intentions. For example: I want to go to the majlis zikr because...
I want to learn.
I dont want to be ignorant.
I want to be in the company of good people, the aleem and the solehin, hence avoid being with bad people.
If I go there, I get to do solat jemaah because my intention is that I want to pray in jemaah for as many times as I could throughout my life
After Maghrib while waiting for Isha, I shall learn my lessons so that should be counted as though I was in a prayer.
I want to do wirid (Ratib al-Haddad) in between Maghrib and Isha.
I want to learn so that I could share with others.
I will pay more attention so that my notes are accurate because I will be sharing them with others.
So that is 6 niyyat there, which is surely better than just having one.

When I first started lecturing this new kitab that we are doing (Kitab al-targhib wat-tarhib) I made a niyyat that I want to finish teaching it until the end. I am not sure if you have the same niyyat of completing the kitab but that is my niyyat.

Be sincere in your niyyat. Those who seek knowledge with other intentions, with bad intentions, they are bound for hellfire. They are those who:
- learn so that they could boast to those who are ignorant.
- seek knowledge so that they could challenge the ulama and be takabbur, be proud of it.
- seek knowledge for popularity, so that people would come to him, acknowledge him and support him.

Allah said that He will punish these people because they seek knowledge for the sake of other than Him. They learn not for Allah sake. So be careful with your niyyat.

- Shaykh Fahmi Zamzam al-Maliki



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