Loving for Allah's sake

A believer devotes his entire life to Allah. He lives for Allah, works for Allah and loves for Allah’s sake. “Loving for Allah’s sake” might be an incomprehensible concept for someone who is not well acquainted with true Islam. One who has remained distant from Allah throughout his life, and who has therefore not known Him, will be unaware of how to love Allah intuitively.

However, a believer who knows Allah and witnesses His mercy to him, who recognises that everything he loves is His blessing and that he owes his existence and life to His mercy, loves Allah and attains the noble spirit of loving for the sake of Allah. In the Qur’an, the great difference between believers and other people in this sense is stated as follows:

Some people set up equals to Allah, loving them as they should love Allah. But those who believe have greater love for Allah… (Surat al-Baqara: 165)

As is stated in the verse above, those who associate partners with Allah and who, in their minds, ascribe all attributes of Allah to other beings, love these beings as they should love Allah. This is the kind of love that is based on idolatry.

Aware that everything belongs to Allah and every being’s existence is consequential upon Allah’s creation, believers love Allah most. The believer grasps the following fact:

- Nothing (be it a human being, a thing or an event, etc.) has a beauty of its own. Allah creates all things and endows them with beauty. Since a person, for example, has not designed and formed his or her face himself, that beauty is a beauty that belongs to Allah.

- Allah gives this beauty to man, whom he created from nothing, for a brief time only (since that person will soon grow old and die). Only Allah possesses the power to recreate that beauty in the hereafter, in an even more perfect form.

This being the case, a believer loves all the things he encounters in this world, aware that they all belong to Allah and that he will encounter the “original” form of their beauty in the hereafter. Consequently, his actual love is for Allah, the One Who provides him with everything he loves: He is the real Owner of every kind of beauty.

Contrary to the concept of love based upon faith in Allah that is enjoyed by believers, disbelievers’ love is based on idolatry. In the Qur’an, this form of love is described in the words of Prophet Ibrahim (as):

He said, “You have adopted idols apart from Allah as tokens of mutual affection in this world. But then on the Day of Rising you will reject one another and curse one another. The Fire will be your shelter. You will have no helpers.” (Surat al-‘Ankabut: 25)

Said Nursi, also known as Bediuzzaman (the Wonder of the Age), one of the greatest Islamic scholars of the twentieth century, likens this form of love to that of a man who looks at the sun through a mirror held in his hand. Once the mirror is broken into pieces and light is no longer reflected from it, the man feels profound distress at having lost a source of light. However, he is not intelligent enough to conceive that the light in the mirror does not actually originate from it. The light comes from the sun; mirrors only reflect it. Believers love only Allah and those who place faith in Him. This being the case, they have no love for anybody who rebels against Allah. This subject is emphasised in the following verses of the Qur’an:

You who believe! Do not take My enemy and your enemy as friends, showing love for them when they have rejected the truth that has come to you, driving the Messenger and yourselves out of your city simply because you believe in Allah your Lord. If you go out to fight in My Way and seeking My pleasure, keeping secret the love you have for them, I know best what you conceal and what you make known. Any of you who do that have strayed from the right way. (Surat al-Mumtahana: 1)

You will not find people who believe in Allah and the Last Day on friendly terms with anyone who opposes Allah and His Messenger, even though they be their fathers, their sons, their brothers or their nearest kindred... (Surat al-Mujadala: 22)

As the verses above make it clear, the love of a believer rests on no criterion other than the “love felt for Allah.” Setting aside all factors such as kinship or material wealth, this love is deeply rooted in faith and noble values. A believer has love for those whose faith is assured rather than for those possessing fame, money or social status, which are only seemingly important. (For further reading see Harun Yahya “Devoted to Allah”)

2008-11-04 12:34:12

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