Words about Love

Since 2012-11-28

Love is the greatest pillar of worship. Worship is based on three pillars: love, fear, and hope. Following are brief words about this greatest pillar: love.

All praise and thanks be to Allah, prayers and peace of Allah be upon His Messenger.

Love is the greatest pillar of worship. Worship is based on three pillars: love, fear, and hope.
Following are brief words about this greatest pillar: love.
Definition and limitation of Love:
Ibn al-Qayyim, may Allah have mercy on him, said, “Love is not limited with a clearer limitation than love itself. Limitations increase its concealment and alienation. Its limitation is its existence. Love cannot be described with a better description than love. People speak about its reasons, requirements, signs, evidences, fruits, and provisions. Their limitations and delineations are around these six things. Their expressions varied and their indications increase according to a person’s perception, position, status, and eloquence.” [Madârij As-Sâlikîn (the Ways of the Successful) 3/11]
Following are some of what has been said about the definition and limitation of love:
1-   Unsurpassed inclination with passionate heart.
2-   Preferring the beloved to anything else.
3-   Conformity with the beloved during attendance and absence.
4-   The agreement of the heart to the needs of the beloved.
5-   Regarding your few sins as too many and regarding your many good deeds as very few.
6-   The heart bears no love whatsoever except the love of the beloved.
7-   Your complete inclination to something, giving it preference to yourself, your soul, and your money, your agreement to it secretly and openly and then your knowledge of your failure in loving it.
8-   Being a slave to the beloved and the freedom from being a slave to anything rather than it.
9-   The heart’s travel seeking for the beloved and the tongue’s continuous mentioning of it.
10-The love of being completely preoccupied and engaged with the beloved.
The Types of Love:
1- Worship love: this is the love of humiliation and glorification to the beloved. It is that the heart of the lover contains from glorification and exaltation of the beloved what requires obeying his orders and avoiding his prohibitions.
Such love is the origin of belief and monotheism. Upon it, countless advantages are based. The one who directs such love to Allah is the believing monotheist, while the one who directs it to other than Allah commits a polytheistic love. Such person sets partners to Allah Glorified and Exalted, as the polytheists who love their gods and their equals to Allah as they love Him. They love the equals such as a tree, a stone, a human being, an angel, or others as they love Allah or even more than Him. Such love is the origin of polytheism and its basis.
2- Love for the sake of Allah Glorified and Exalted: such as to love what Allah loves of the places, times, persons, deeds, words and the alike. Such love is joined to the love of Allah.
3- The Natural love, that includes:
a.    The love of compassion and mercy, such as the love of parents to their children and the love of the sick and weak.
b.    The love of reverence and glorification without worshipping, such as the love of children to their parents, students to their teachers and sheikhs and the alike.
c.    The love of man to what suits him such as the love of food, drinking, marrying, clothes, friends, partners and the alike.
Such types of love are included in the natural and permissible kinds of love. If they help in loving and obeying Allah they are considered acts of obedience; while if they prevent from loving Allah and are used for invoking what Allah dislikes, they become prohibitions. If they do not help in performing an act of obedience or disobedience, then they are among permissible things.
The Virtues of Loving Allah:
Loving Allah -Glorified and Exalted- is the noblest gain, and the greatest gift. Its virtues are countless. Among which are:
1- It is the origin and soul of monotheism. Sheikh Abdurrahman ibn Sa’di, may Allah have mercy on him, said, “The origin and soul of monotheism are to devote love to Allah alone. This is the origin of deity and worship. It is even the essence of worship. Monotheism is not perfect until the love of a person to his Lord is complete, before it beats and controls all kinds of love. All the loves of a person, therefore, follow such love by which the happiness and success of a person are achieved.” [Al-Qawl As-Sadîd (the Right Sayings) p. 110]
2- Needing the love of Allah is greater than the need for food, drinks, and marriage. Sheikh of Islam Ibn Taymiyya, may Allah have mercy on him, said, “In the hearts of the sons of Adam there is love for that whom they idolize and worship. This is the straightness of their hearts and the righteousness of their souls. In addition, there is the love of what they eat and what they marry. That is how their lives become good and their unity continues. Their need for deifying is greater than their need for food. When food is lost, bodies are spoiled whereas when deity is lost, the souls are corrupted.” [Jami’ ar-Rasâ’il (the Collective of Messages) by ibn Taymiyya 230/2]
Ibn al-Qayyim, may Allah have mercy on him, said, “How about the love which is the life of the hearts and the food of the souls. The heart does not have pleasure, grace, success or life but by love. If the heart losses it, its pain becomes greater than the pain of the eyes if they lose their lights, the ears if they lose their hearing, the nose if it loses its smelling and the tongue if it loses its articulation. If the heart is free from loving its Originator, Evolver, and right deity, its corruption is even greater than the corruption of the body if it is empty from the soul. Such thing is only believed by the one who is alive. An injury does not hurt the dead.” [Aj-Jawab Al-Kafy (the Sufficient Answer) pp. 541-542]
3- It consoles the lover upon disasters: Ibn al-Qayyim, may Allah have mercy on him, said, “A lover finds consolation in the pleasure of love that makes him forget disasters. He does not find it harmful as others do. It even seems that he has another nature different from other people. The sovereignty of love becomes strong that a lover feels more pleasure with many disasters that hit him by his beloved than the pleasure of the one who is empty from love by his lucks and desires; and inclination and passion testify for that. Allah knows best.” [Madarij As-Salikîn 3/38]
4- It is one of the greatest matters that incite deserting sins. During speaking about the love of Allah, Ibn al-Qayyim, may Allah have mercy on him, said, “It is one of the greatest reasons for being patient in not performing any acts of disobedience or sins. A lover obeys his beloved. The more the sovereignty of love is in heart, the stronger the requirement for obedience and deserting disobedience is. Sins and disobedience come from the weakness of love and its sovereignty.
There is a difference between the one who deserts disobeying his lord because of his fear from his whip and punishment and the one who does that because of his love for his lord”. He, may Allah have mercy on him, then said, “The true lover has an observer from his beloved that watches his heart and limbs. The sign of the truthfulness of love is the witness and continuity of such observer.
There is a witticism in these words that must be noticed. Mere love does not entail such effect if it is not accompanied by reverence and glorification for the beloved. If it is accompanied by reverence and glorification, it necessitates such shyness and obedience. Mere love that does not contain them entails a kind of intimacy, delight, remembrance, and longing.
That is why its effect and result are absent. A person searches his heart and finds a kind of love to Allah. However, it does not incite him to desert sins. This is because it does not contain reverence and glorification. Nothing makes a heart thrive such as love accompanied by reverence and glorification. This is the best gifts of Allah to His slave. That is the grace of Allah; which He bestows upon whom He wills.” [Tarîq Al-Hijratayn (the Road of the two Immigrations) pp. 449-450]
5- It ceases obsessions. Ibn al-Qayyim, may Allah have mercy on him, said, “There is a severe contradiction between love and obsessions just like that between remembrance and negligence. The determination of a lover expels the hesitation of the heart between the beloved and the others, which is the cause of obsession. How far it is for a true lover to find a space for the obsession about others, as his heart is absorbed before his beloved. Is obsession for other than those who are unaware of, and who turn away from Allah, the Almighty? How can love and obsession gather?
No rest for other than you
In which he divides his thinking and obsesses
[Madarij As-Salikîn 3/38]
6- Perfect bliss and utmost joy: they cannot be achieved but with loving Allah Glorified and Exalted. Nothing can satisfy or fill a heart but loving and approaching to Him. If the heart achieves whatever makes it pleased, it cannot feel serenity or tranquility but with loving Allah Glorified and Exalted.
Ibn al-Qayyim, may Allah have mercy on him, said, “As for loving the Lord the Almighty, it is of a different nature. There is nothing more beloved for the hearts than their Creator and Originator. He is their God, Deity, Protector, Lord, Arranger, Provider, the One Who gives them life and causes them to die. Loving Him is the bliss of the souls, the life of the spirits, the joy of the selves, the nourishment of the hearts, the light of the minds, the delight of the eyes, and the foundation of the interior. The sound hearts, good souls and righteous minds have no sweeter, more delicious, better, happier, more blessed than loving, liking to be with and longing to meet Him.
The sweetness found in the heart of a believer is beyond any sweetness. The bliss achieved by that, is more complete than any bliss. The pleasure gotten is higher than any pleasure.” He then says, “The passion and taste of these matters are in accordance to the sovereignty and weakness of love, they are achieved according to perceiving the beauty of the beloved and being near to him. The perfect the love and perception of the lover are and the closer he is, the more the sweetness, pleasure and bliss are. The one who knows Allah Almighty, His names and attributes, the one who loves Him more and is closer to Him, finds such indescribable sweetness in his heart. He is only known by inclination and passion. Whenever the heart tastes that, it cannot give precedence or pleasure to other than Him.
The more he loves Him, the more he worships, humbles himself for, submits to, and becomes a slave to Him and the more he is free from the slavery of others.” [Ighâthat Al-Lahfân (Relieving the Desirous) p. 567]
The Characteristics of Those Beloved by Allah
Allah –Glorified and Exalted- loves and is being loved. Allah Almighty- says, {Allah will bring a people whom He will love and they will love Him;} [Surat Al-Ma’idah 5:54]
{فَسَوْفَ يَأْتِي اللَّـهُ بِقَوْمٍ يُحِبُّهُمْ وَيُحِبُّونَهُ} المائدة: 54
Transliteration:  fasawfa yatee Allahu biqawmin yuhibbuhum wayuhibboonahu 
Following are a summary of some of the characteristics of those whom Allah loves:
1-   The constantly turning unto Him in repentance.
2-   Who purify themselves, (by taking a bath, cleaning, and washing thoroughly their private parts, bodies, for their prayers).
3-   The righteous.
4-   The good-doers (who perform good deeds totally for Allâh’s sake only without any show off or to gain praise or fame, etc., and in accordance with the Sunnah of Allâh’s Messenger Muhammad).
5-   The patient.
6-   Those who put their trust on Him.
7-   Those who act justly.
8-   Those who fight in His Cause in rows (ranks) as if they were a solid structure.
9-   Humble towards the believers.
10-Stern towards the disbelievers.
11-Fighters for the sake of Allah.
12-Those who do not fear the blame of blamers (other than Allah).
13-Those who get closer to Him by performing optional acts of worship after observing the obligatory ones.
The reasons bringing about the love of Allah
1-   Reciting the Quran, pondering about it, and understanding its meanings and what is meant through it.
2-   Getting closer to Allah by performing optional acts of worship after observing the obligatory ones.
3-   The continuous remembrance of Allah in all conditions by the tongue, heart, deed and status.
4-   Preferring what Allah loves to what the soul loves when desires overcome one.
5-   The knowledge of the heart to the names and attributes of Allah, contemplating and looking through them.
6-   Seeing His bounty, benefaction, gifts and His Graces, (both) apparent (i.e. Islâmic Monotheism, and the lawful pleasures of this world, including health, good looks, etc.) and hidden [i.e. One’s Faith in Allâh (of Islâmic Monotheism).
7-   The Heart’s total humbleness before Allah the Almighty.
8-   Being alone with Allah during the time of the Divine descending to converse secretly to Him, reciting His Words, standing by heart and having the good manners of worship before Him, and ending that with asking for forgiveness and repentance.
9-   Accompanying the true lovers and picking the best fruits of their words just like picking the best fruits, and not to speak unless speaking is better, and knowing that it increases your status and benefits others.
10-Alienate all the reasons that intervene between the heart and Allah Glorified and Exalted.
[see Madarij As-Salikîn 3/38 3/18-19]
O Allah, we ask for Your love, the love of those who love You, and the love of the work that brings us closer to Your love.
Prayers and peace of Allah be upon our Prophet Muhammad and upon all his family and companions.
Written by Muhammad ibn Ibrahim Al-Hamad
Ibn Khuzaymah House


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