Life is a Fitnah! (Part 1 andPart 2). By: Salahudin Mikhail Ovtchinnikov.

Life is a Fitnah! (Part 1)

(as Understood From Soorah Al-‘Ankaboot)
Shaykh Saalih ibn ‘Abdil-‘Azeez Aalish-Shaykh
From a recorded lecture [1] translated exclusively for bakkah.net

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[ In the Name of Allaah, the All-Merciful, may His Salaah and Salaam be upon His final Messenger to all mankind, and upon his companions and family members, and all those who follow his path until the Day of Judgement, to proceed: ]

The central theme of Soorah Al-‘Ankaboot, as some of the scholars have mentioned, is fitnah (trials and tribulations). Fitnah is mentioned right from the very beginning of the soorah where Allaah says [2]:

( Alif – Laam – Meem. Do people then think they will be left alone upon saying, “We believe in Allaah,” and they will not be faced with fitnah? And verily we put those who came before them to trials, so that Allaah would make known those who have been truthful, and so that Allaah would make known the liars. )

So fitnah is mentioned specifically in the beginning of the soorah.

So what kind of fitnah are people tried with? A man may be put to trial due to his intellect, or by the dunyaa. He may be tried by his parents or by his family. He may be put to fitnah by way of a long lifespan. His fitnah may be that he faces no hardships at all in life! So the reality is that a man may be tested by a variety of trials, all of them are mentioned here in this soorah.

So in this soorah, Soorah Al-‘Ankaboot, Allaah mentions the varieties of trials and the foundations that they are built upon. He also mentions how a man may be saved from these kinds of trials.

That is because this worldly life, in reality, is merely a test and a trial. The Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam) said, as ‘Iyyaadh ibn Himaar narrated, and it has been collected by Imaam Muslim in his Saheeh:

“Allaah, Most High, has said, ‘Yaa Muhammad! Verily I have only sent you to put you to trials and to put others to trial by way of you.'” [3]

So life, in reality, is just a fitnah. And this fitnah – is it by way of evil things or good things? It is by way of evil and good things alike! (Allaah says) [4]:

( And We shall test you with trials of evil and good, and to Us you will return )

Look to what Allaah mentions in the beginning of this soorah:

( Do people then think…)

Who is included in the word ( people )? It includes both the believer and the disbeliever. It includes both the old and young. It includes all categories of people as they interact with all other categories.

( Do people then think they will be left alone upon saying, “We believe in Allaah,” and they will not be faced with fitnah? )

You say you are a believer, so when can your faith be considered true eemaan? That is when trials have been placed in front of you, and you have passed them successfully upon Allaah’s Order.

You might even be tried by your own self! There are people who are put to fitnah because of their beauty and good qualities. A woman may be tested by her own possessions, and a man may also be tested by his own wealth. One may be tested by his parents as well. So you will find in this soorah mention of all these kinds of fitnah, their origins, and solutions to them.
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FOOTNOTES (Abul-‘Abbaas)

[1] from the second side of cassette entitled Maqaasid As-Suwar wa Atharu Thaalika fit-Tafseer, translated by Abul-‘Abbaas

[2] the meaning of Soorah Al-‘Ankaboot (29):1-3

[3] from an authentic hadeeth collected by Imaam Muslim in his Saheeh (#7136), it begins with: “Verily my Lord has ordered me to teach you what you did not know from what He has taught me…”

[4] the meaning of Soorah Al-Ambiyaa’ (21):35

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As Salam alaykum wa Rahmat’Allahi wa Barakatuhu dear members of this group: please do not forget that any comments, questions and even constructive criticism may be directly directed at brother Mohamed Riswan or myself (through a private message). While we are not scholars of Islam, we will strive to provide feedback, insha’Allah, from those who have been endowed with deep-rooted knowledge of Islam. We thank you very much for your interest in the Religion of Allah, and pray that Allah brings us, and you closer to Him thereby. Ameen
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Life is a Fitnah! (Part 2)

(as Understood From Soorah Al-‘Ankaboot)
Shaykh Saalih ibn ‘Abdil-‘Azeez Aalish-Shaykh
From a recorded lecture [1] translated exclusively for bakkah.net

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The Fitnah of Disbelieving Parents

Take this example: In the first part of the soorah, Allaah says [5]:

( And we have commanded the people to be good to their parents. But if they strive to make you join partners with Me, those that you have no knowledge of, then do not obey them! To Me is your return. )

Note here that some parents cause fitnah and strive to make a servant commit shirk. Isn’t this a fitnah? Indeed it is a tremendous fitnah!

The scholars of Tafseer have mentioned that this verse was revealed about the events involving Sa’d ibn Abee Waqqaas, when his mother tried to turn him back to disbelief. Even with this kind of situation, Allaah ordered him to bear the company of his parents with kindness, but no to obey them. He said [5]:

( But if they strive to make you join partners with Me, those that you have no knowledge of, then do not obey them! To Me is your return and I will inform you of what you used to do. )

And He said in the beginning of the verse:

( And we have commanded the people to be good to their parents )

This is a tremendous fitnah! So then what is the way out of it? The answer is, with the proper understanding of Allaah’s Legislation, that you do not obey them when they command you with kufr, shirk, or disobedience to Allaah, however you still bear their company with kindness.

There are some people who are tried by this fitnah, and they accompany their parents, not in kindness, but with harshness, and have thus fallen into the prohibition to some degree. The one who can be patient with such a difficult affair, bearing their companionship with kindness and not obeying them (when they order him with disobedience to Allaah), is the one who is successful in dealing with fitnah in such a case.

The Fitnah of Being in the Minority

Another kind of fitnah is when a person sees a great number of people disbelieving in Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic. They do not believe, and so along comes a man and feels that he and the people of faith are very few, and that the disbelievers, the hypocrites, criminals, or disobedient ones are the majority. How can he keep straight himself, how? This is a kind of fitnah that attacks the heart.

Very few of the people in this kind of situation stay firm. Most of them look to the people – the majority are into evil, so they fall into it. In this soorah, there is mention of this issue, along with the solution! So read the soorah and contemplate over that. [6]

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FOOTNOTES (Abul-‘Abbaas)

[5] the meaning of Soorah Al-‘Ankaboot (29):7

[6] A further explanation of this comes later in the article.

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As Salam alaykum wa Rahmat’Allahi wa Barakatuhu dear members of this group: please do not forget that any comments, questions and even constructive criticism may be directly directed at brother Mohamed Riswan or myself (through a private message). While we are not scholars of Islam, we will strive to provide feedback, insha’Allah, from those who have been endowed with deep-rooted knowledge of Islam. We thank you very much for your interest in the Religion of Allah, and pray that Allah brings us, and you closer to Him thereby. Ameen
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