Perfected Faith

The Belief In Allah of Those of Perfected Faith

They fear Allah

"… they stand in awe and reverence of His Glory." (Surat al-Anbiya', 28)

People of perfected faith who grasp the greatness, might and eternal wisdom of Allah, feel a "fear full of respect" for our Lord. Keeping in mind the verse of the Qur'an, "So have fear of Allah, as much as you are able to..." (Surat at-Taghabun, 16), they set no limit to their fear.

Every event they encounter, everything they see around them draw them nearer to Allah and deepen their faith and thus their fear.

Such deep fear ensures that the highest degree of attention is paid to the observance of the limits Allah has determined. The standard of these observances manifests itself in the meticulousness of one's obedience to all of Allah's commands and advice and the strict avoidance of the things He forbids. This attitude of the people of perfected faith is referred to in the following verse:

They fear their Lord above them and do everything they are ordered to do. (Surat an-Nahl, 50)

In the Qur'an, Allah gives an example that will help us attain a better understanding of those points, and draws our attention to the kind of fear that will please Him most:

If We Had sent down this Qur'an upon a mountain, you would have seen it humbled, crushed to pieces out of fear of Allah. In such parables We speak to people so that hopefully they may reflect. (Surat al-Hashr, 21)

As the above verse states, the fear of those who have a deep faith in Allah is intense and deep.

The fear of Allah that the people of perfected faith feel is very intense yet, by no means, distressing such as the false fears experienced by those who do not live by the values of the Qur'an. This is the kind of fear which is based on the profound respect and inner love that caused believers to be devoted to Allah, their Creator. This is a fear that gives man zeal, excitement and determination. This is, moreover, the kind of fear that makes man avoid any deed that would not please Allah. This is the fear that prompts believers to engage in good deeds, imbues them with the good morals prescribed by Islam and thus is a feeling that provides "spiritual satisfaction". This fear can be felt only through the deep love one has for Allah. People of faith love Allah as much as they fear Him. These two concepts remain side by side in a believer's heart and remain as two important signs of perfected faith.

What makes people of perfected faith apprehensive about their Lord is their proper appreciation of Him. Allah is al-Qahhar (the All-Conquering, the One Who, by His Might, has subdued everything He created to His Authority and Power), al-Mu'adhdhib (the Tormentor), al-Muntaqim (the Avenger), as-Sa'iq (He Who drives to hell), al-Muthill (the One Who debases or humiliates whomsoever He pleases). Believers, who are aware of these attributes of Allah, know that He can inflict any form of punishment on anyone at any time He wills. They are aware that only those who carry out their duty to Allah can be saved from this punishment. For this reason, they fear nobody but Allah, the Almighty.


They love Allah more than anyone and anything else

"… they said, 'Allah is enough for us and the Best of Guardians.'" (Surah Al 'Imran, 173)

The love of those who have perfected faith is as strong as the fear they have for Him. They know that Allah is the One Who has created them out of nothing and bestowed upon them countless blessings. They are also aware that He watches and protects them at every moment. They believe that all living things have come into existence solely by His permission, and that one day they will perish at His will. They know that He is the only Being Who will exist for all eternity.

Having grasped this fact, they direct all their love to Allah, their Creator and Owner in accordance with the counsel of Allah's Messenger (saas), "Love Allah because He nourishes and sustains you…" (Tirmidhi). They love Allah more than anyone or anything else they see, know or comprehend. They are aware that there is no friend and helper better than Allah, "... the Best of Masters, and the Best of Helpers!" (Surat al-Anfal, 40) In a prayer of the Prophet Ibrahim (as), who was a devoted believer, this awareness is abundantly clear:

It is He Who created me and guides me; He Who gives me food and gives me drink; and when I am ill, it is He Who heals me; He Who will cause my death, then give me life; He Who I sincerely hope will forgive my mistakes on the Day of Reckoning. My Lord, bestow upon me right judgement and unite me with the righteous. (Surat ash-Shu'ara', 78-83)

As the verses state, the Prophet Ibrahim (as) is well aware that it is Allah Who gives him life, governs every event on earth, gives him food, causes illness and creates the means of recovery and that He is the only Ruler of the earth. So, he is attached to Him with love. This is the type of love felt for Allah that people of perfected faith take as an example.

The love the people of perfected faith have for other created beings is in direct relation with the love they have for Allah. The criterion for loving people depends on the extent to which they exhibit the good morals that please Allah. Believers nurture a great love for those people who pay attention to the commands and prohibitions of Allah and strive hard to live by good moral standards. The main reason why they love these people is the deep love they feel for Allah and their commitment to take Him as their sole friend.

True faith makes believers genuinely grasp that all beauty, wisdom and the faculties they see in this world belong to Allah. When believers meet a good-looking, wise and talented person, for instance, they derive great pleasure from these qualities, remembering that Allah is the Creator and Giver of all these traits. For this reason, the pleasure they take in these qualities is not a pleasure apart and distant from the love they feel for Allah. On the contrary, it is a source of profound love and respect for Allah.

Those who have no deep faith have no great love for Allah. These people, in actuality, know that it is Allah Who gives them life, guards them at every moment, bestows upon them countless blessings and forgives them. However, for the greater part of their lives, they forget these facts or simply disregard them. Assuming that the living things Allah created possess a power independent from Him, they feel a separate love towards these created beings. In the Qur'an, the situation of these people is stated as follows:

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

In another verse, the difference between these people and people of perfected faith is explained as follows:

Allah is the Protector of those who have faith. He brings them out of the darkness into the light. But those who disbelieve have false gods as protectors. They take them from the light into the darkness. Those are the Companions of the Fire remaining in it timelessly, for ever. (Surat al-Baqara, 257)


They do not set up any other god beside Allah

… "They worship Me, not associating anything with Me." … (Surat an-Nur, 55)

The belief of people of perfected faith is a strong credo based on wisdom and conscience. In the words of the Qur'an, "they believe in Allah and His Messenger, then they have no doubts..." (Surat al-Hujurat, 15) Since they have a full grasp of the might and greatness of Allah, they affirm from the beginning that there is no god that is equal or similar to Him. In the Qur'an, the sole guide of believers, Allah states this fact as follows:

Allah: there is no god but Him, the Living, the Self-Sustaining. He is not subject to drowsiness or sleep. Everything in the heavens and the earth belongs to Him. Who can intercede with Him except by His permission? He knows what is before men and what is behind them, but they can grasp only that part of His knowledge which He wills. His throne encompasses the heavens and the earth and their preservation does not tire Him. He is the Most High, the Magnificent. (Surat al-Baqara, 255)

Beside this, some people, despite believing in the existence of Allah, also assume that some worldly living beings possess a power apart and separate from Allah and take them, in a sense, as "idols". We should not, therefore, limit the concept of the "idol" to pieces of sculptured stone or wood, or fake gods fabricated by false religions. Today, there are many material or nonmaterial things that are not so named, but which are taken as idols.

Any endeavour in the part of an individual to please a being other than Allah-assuming that that being is capable of helping him and re-orienting his life according to will of that being-can be described as taking it as "an idol". Some people, for instance, aim at attaining money, beauty, respect, a career or satisfying the desires of their lower selves. Such people neglect to work towards attaining the approval of Allah, which should ideally be their main purpose. These are the ones who set up gods beside Allah.

This is the point on which the distinctive quality of the people of perfected faith becomes most obvious. That is because, unlike those mentioned above, the people of perfected faith confirm with their hearts and entire lives that there is no God but Him. They turn to Him and do not set up partners with Him, thus "making religion pure for Him alone." (Surat az-Zumar, 11) Allah describes His sincere servants as:

... Those who repent and mend their ways, who hold fast to Allah and dedicate their religion to Allah alone; they are with the believers. Allah will give the believers an immense reward. (Surat an-Nisa', 146)