Tawbah : Turning To Allah In Repentance - Chapter From Ibn Al-Qayyim's 'Madarij Al-Salikin'
Every human is susceptible to make mistakes. The Quran gives them hope and teaches them to ask Allah SWT to take care of them and guide them to the right path. Tawbah has been cited more than 80 times in the Quran. One of the beautiful names of Allah SWT is Tawwab, i.e. the One who responds to the supplication of the worshipper and grants him forgiveness when he returns to Him in repentance.
Tawbah : Turning To Allah In Repentance by Imam Ibn Qayyim Al-Jawziyyah deals with the spiritual side of tawbah without neglecting the physical requirement and conditions.
It is taken from the book Madarij Al-Salikin Bayn Manazil Iyyaka Na’budu Wa Iyyaka Nasta’in (The Stages of the Travellers Between the Stations of Only You we Worship and Only You we Seek Help From), which is one of Ibn Al-Qayyim’s best works and is considered to be among the greatest works produced on Islamic spirituality.
Supported with extracts from the Qur’an and quotes from Allah's Messenger (Sallallahu Alayhe Wassalam), the author deals with apparent and deeper aspects of repentance, and the true essence of repentance and its conditions. Some of the issues he discusses are as follows:
- The conditions of repentance
- Whether repentance is required immediately
- If repentance from one sin is valid if the person insists on committing another one
- Whether a person can return to the same position he held after repentance
- Whether a man who committed a sin and repented can reach the status of the one who is free from any sin
- What are the conditions of 'sincere repentance' (Tawba-tan-Nasuha), which the Quran commands to perform
- Whether it is a requirement of the validity of repentance that the person should not commit the sin again
Imam Ibn Al-Qayyim, based on his profound depth of knowledge asserted that Allah SWT has divided people into two categories: those who turn to him and those who are wrongdoers. There is no third category.
There are other topics related to the subject, which he explains such as:
- major and minor sins
- difference of opinions of the scholars in the definition and number of major sins
- the difference between Istighfaar and Tawbah
- the causes which compel a person to commit a sin
Imam Ibn Al-Qayyim starts with the following beautiful profound and eloquent words:
"The state of repentance, tawbah, is at the beginning, the middle and the end of all states of submission to the will of Allah. The servant who seeks the pleasure of Allah never abandons tawbah. He remains in the state of tawbah until his death. Whatever his state of belief, the servant makes tawbah his constant companion. Thus, tawbah is at the beginning and at the end of his servitude to his Creator. His need for tawbah at the end, just as at the beginning, overrides, and supersedes all other needs.
وَتُوبُوا إِلَى اللَّهِ جَمِيعًا أَيُّهَ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ
Allah says: "Turn to Allah in repentance all together, O believers, so that you may be successful," (Surah A-Nur 24:31)
This verse belongs to the Madinan period in which He addressed the people of faith and the best of His creatures to turn to Him in repentance after they believed, showed patience, emigrated and engaged in Jihad. He attached prosperity with repentance like the cause and effect. He used the word لَعَلَّ (may) which indicates expectation to point out that when you turn in repentance, you will hope for success because the hope of success belongs only to those who turn to Allah in repentance. May Allah make us among those!"
Title: Tawbah : Turning To Allah In Repentance - Chapter From Ibn Al-Qayyim's 'Madarij Al-Salikin'
Author: Imam Ibn Al-Qayyim
Translator: Abdullah Hamid Ali
Publisher: Darussalam London / Darussalam International Publications - UK
Size: 15 cm x 21 cm
Edition Number: 1st
Year Of Publication: 2016
Weight: 0.25 kg
The author, Imam Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah (d. 751H), was one of the most prolific scholars of Islam. His inimitable and distinct understanding of Qur'an and and Hadith was acknowledged by his peers, while his commentaries and interpretations remain unique in accuracy. He studied under Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah for sixteen years and accompanied him up and till his death; learning a great deal of knowledge from him. He authored over sixty works, covering a multitude of Islamic sciences; many of his writings are characterised by their touching address to the heart and soul. He was deeply pious and took great care in how he utilised his time.