Source book: UDDATHUSAABIREEN WA ZAQIRATHUSHAAKIREEN (Tools for the Patient & Provisions for the Thankful)
Shaykh ul –Islaam
Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah
Abbas Abu Yahya
Imaan in Patience and Gratitude
Imaan is of two halves; half is patience (Sabr) and half is being thankful
More than one from amongst the Salaf said: ‘Patience is half of Imaan.’
Abdullaah bin Masood - radi Allaahu anhu – said: ‘Imaan is of two halves: half is
patience and half is gratitude.’
This is why Allaah – Subhanahu – combines patience and being thankful in
His saying: <<Truly, in this there are signs for every patient, thankful person.>>1
As Allaah has mentioned in the verses of soorat Ha Mim ‘Ain Seen Qaaf
33, and soorat Saba 19, and in soorat Luqman 31. Indeed there are
considerations which have been mentioned for these classifications of
patience and gratitude:
The First Consideration:
That Imaan is a definition for all sayings, actions and intentions. And this is
divided into two divisions: performing righteous actions and leaving
prohibitions; so doing an action is obedience to Allaah and that is the reality
of Shukr. Leaving a prohibition is being patient in keeping away from sins,
and all of the Deen is about these two aspects: doing that what you have
been commanded to do, and leaving what you have been commanded to
1 Ibrahim 14:5
The Second Consideration:
That Imaan is built upon two pillars: Yaqeen (certainty), and Sabr (patience).
They are two pillars that are mentioned in His Ta’ala’s saying:
<<And We made from among them (Children of Israel), leaders, giving guidance under
Our Command, when they were patient and used to believe with certainty in Our
So with Yaqeen, the reality of commands and prohibitions is known, and the
reality of reward and punishment is also known. With patience commands
are carried out, and patience also stops a person from doing that which he
has been prohibited from. He will not achieve true faith in fulfilling
commands and keeping away from prohibitions, knowing these commands
and prohibitions are from Allaah, nor will he achieve true faith of reward
and punishment, except with Yaqeen (certainty).
It is not possible for the slave to remain steadfast upon carrying out
commands, and stopping oneself from prohibitions except with patience,
therefore patience becomes half of Imaan, and the second half of Imaan is
being thankful, by carrying out what he has been commanded with, and
leaving that which he has been prohibited from.
The Third Consideration:
Imaan is sayings and actions. Sayings of the heart, and sayings of the tongue.
Actions of the heart, and actions of the limbs.
The explanation of this is: whoever knows Allaah with his heart, and does
not affirm it with his tongue then he cannot be a believer.
As Allaah said concerning the people of Pharaoh:
<< And they belied the Ayaat, wrongfully and arrogantly, though they themselves were
convinced thereof [i.e. those (Ayaat) are from Allaah] >>3
And like wise, Allaah said concerning the people of ‘Aad and the people of
<<And 'Ad and Thamûd (people)! And indeed (their destruction) is clearly apparent to
you from their (ruined) dwellings. Shaytan made their deeds fair seeming to them, and
turned them away from the Right Path, though they were intelligent. >>4
2 Sooratul as-Sajda 24
3 Sooratul Naml 14
And Musa said to Pharaoh:
(( Musa said: "Verily, you know that these signs have been sent down by none but the
Lord of the heavens and the earth as clear evidences ))5.
So these people achieved the sayings of the heart: which are al-Ma’rifah
(knowing) and ‘ilm (knowledge), but despite this they were not regarded as
believers. Also, the person who says with his tongue that which is not in his
heart is not regarded as a believer, but rather he is regarded as being from
Also, the one who knows with his heart and affirms it with his tongue is not
regarded as a believer with just that, until he performs actions of the heart
from love and hate, friendship and hostility; so he loves for Allaah and His
Messenger, and he has loyalty to the ‘Aawliyah (friends) of Allaah and he
shows enmity to the enemies of Allaah, and he submits his heart to Allaah
Alone. Submitting oneself to following His Messenger and obedience to
Him (Allaah), and adhering to His Sharia’ externally and internally, and if he
does this, it is not sufficient for him to have complete Imaan until he does
that what he has been commanded with.
So these four ‘Arkaan (pillars) are the ‘Arkaan of Imaan upon which Imaan is
built, and it is: going back to knowledge and action, and abstaining from that
which is prohibited, which is also regarded as action. Both knowledge and
action cannot be achieved except with patience, so Imaan becomes two
halves: one of which is patience, and the other which is the result of this
patience, is knowledge and action.
The Fourth Consideration:
The soul has two forces: a driving force, and a restraining force, and the soul
is always going back and forth between the rules of these two forces; driven
towards that which it loves, and abstaining from that which it dislikes. The
whole of the Deen is based upon, motivating oneself and abstaining.
Motivation towards obedience, and abstention from sinning against Allaah.
It is not possible to achieve any of these except by patience.
4 Sooratul Ankaboot 38
5 Sooratul Isra 102
The Fifth Consideration:
The whole of the Deen is hope and fear, so the believer is one who has hope
and fear. Allaah Ta’ala said: <<Verily, they used to hasten on to do good deeds, and
they used to call on us in hope and in fear>>6
And in the supplication at the time of going to sleep, which Bukhari
narrated in his ‘Saheeh’: ‘O Allaah, indeed I have submitted my self to You,
and directed my face towards You, and entrusted my matters to You.’
So you will never find a believer except that he is one who has hope and
fear. Hope and fear are not established except on the stalk of patience, so
fear encourages him to be patience and hope steers him towards being
The Sixth Consideration:
That everything that a slave is exposed to in this world, does not exclude
that which will benefit him in this world and in the Hereafter, or that which
will harm him in this world and in the Hereafter, or that which will benefit
him in one of these two places, and harm him in the other. The noblest
types of action that a person does are those that benefit him in the
Hereafter, and he leaves the other world and leaves that which will harm
him in it, and this is the reality of Imaan. Hence the action that benefits him
is Shukr (thankfulness), and leaving that which harms him is patience.
The Seventh Consideration:
That a slave cannot separate himself from an action that he does, nor a
prohibition that he leaves, and destiny overtakes him. He has an obligation
of three things, patience and thankfulness. So fulfilling that which you have
been commanded to do is Shukr (thankfulness) and leaving prohibitions and
being patient with your destiny, is patience.
The Eighth Consideration:
Indeed the slave consists of two aspects which call him: an invitation that
calls him to the Duniya and its worldly desires and delights. And an
invitation that calls him to Allaah and the Hereafter, and that which has
been prepared in it for the ‘Aawliyah of Allaah from amongst its everlasting
6 Sooratul Anbiyya 90
So the rebel of worldly passions and desires is Sabr, and that which responds
to Allaah and the Hereafter is Shukr.
The Ninth Consideration:
The Deen revolves around two fundamental principles: determination and
perseverance. These are two principles which are mentioned in the hadeeth
which has been narrated by Ahmad and an-Nisaee on the authority of the
Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- ‘O Allaah verily I ask of You perseverance in my
affairs, and determination in conduct.7
The foundation of Shukr is the correctness of resolve, and the foundation of
Sabr is the force of perseverance, so when a slave is supported with
determination and perseverance, then he has indeed been supported with
assistance and capability.
The Tenth Consideration:
Indeed the Deen is built upon two foundations: Truth and patience, and both
are mentioned in the saying of Allaah Ta’ala:
<<And they advise one another to the truth, and recommend one another with
So what it is required of the slave is to do actions truthfully with in himself,
and implementing them amongst the people.
And this is the reality of Shukr, which is not possible for the slave unless he
is patient upon it, and in doing that Sabr becomes half of Imaan.
And Allaah -Subhanahu Ta’ala- knows best.
All Praise belongs to Allaah, may His peace and blessings be upon our final Prophet Muhammad, his
family, his companions and all those who follow his guidance.
7 As-Saheehah 3228 – Shaykh Albaani
8 Sooratul Asr 3
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