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al kafi 1081


Assalamualaikum SS Dato’ Seri Mufti. I once read a statement regarding how sins would bring about discontentment. However, through my own observation, sometimes I see people who are sinning but have a happy life. What is your opinion on this matter? Thank you.



Alhamdulillah, praise and thanks to Allah for the countless blessings He has blessed us all with. Blessings and salutations to the Prophet Muhammad PBUH, his wives, his family, companions and all those that follow his teachings to the day of judgement.

The statement that you read is true. This is in line with a hadith from Nawwas bin Sam’an RA, the Prophet PBUH said:

الْبِرُّ حُسْنُ الْخُلُقِ وَالإِثْمُ مَا حَاكَ فِى صَدْرِكَ وَكَرِهْتَ أَنْ يَطَّلِعَ عَلَيْهِ النَّاسُ

“The essence of virtue is (manifested in) good morals (Akhlaq) whereas sinful conduct is that which turns in your heart (making you feel uncomfortable) and you dislike that it would be disclosed to other people.”

Sahih Muslim (2553)

Imam al-Nawawi explains the meaning of the above hadith as: The meaning of the phrase “حَاكَ فِي صَدْرك” is discontentment, doubts, apprehension, suspension, fear and concern in one’s heart for he is in sin. (See Syarh al-Nawawi ‘ala Sahih Muslim, 8/343)

In another hadith, the Prophet PBUH said:

الْبِرُّ مَا اطْمَأَنَّتْ إِلَيْهِ النَّفْسُ وَالْإِثْمُ مَا حَاكَ فِي النَّفْسِ وَتَرَدَّدَ فِي الصَّدْرِ

“Righteousness is that about which the soul feels at ease and the heart feels tranquil. And wrongdoing is that which wavers in the soul and causes uneasiness in their chests,”

Musnad Ahmad (18006)

In answering the question asked, we will begin with a hadith from Abu Hurairah RA, the Prophet PBUH said:

فَإِنْ هُوَ نَزَعَ وَاسْتَغْفَرَ وَتَابَ صَقَلَتْ قَلْبَهُ ، وَإِنْ عَادَ زِيدَ فِيهَا حَتَّى تَعْلُوَ قَلْبَهُ فَهُوَ الرَّانُ الَّذِي ذَكَرَ اللَّهُ {كَلاَّ بَلْ رَانَ عَلَى قُلُوبِهِمْ مَا كَانُوا يَكْسِبُونَ}

“When the believer commits sin, a black spot appears on his heart. If he repents and gives up that sin and seeks forgiveness, his heart will be polished. But if (the sin) increases, (the black spot) increases. That is the Ran that Allah mentions in His Book: “Nay! But on their hearts is the Ran (covering of sins and evil deeds) which they used to earn.” [83:14]”

Sunan al-Nasa’ie (11594)

This means, their hearts are darkened as a result of their continuous sins until light and guidance can no longer reach it. This will ultimately make him synonymous with sin.

Allah SWT said:

كَلَّا ۖ بَلْ ۜ رَانَ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِهِم مَّا كَانُوا يَكْسِبُونَ

“No! Rather, the stain has covered their hearts of that which they were earning.”

Surah al-Mutaffifin (14)

Ibn Kathir said: The reality is not as they had thought, where they said, the Quran is nothing more than old tales, but in truth it is the words of Allah, revealed to the Prophet PBUH. Indeed, Allah SWT has sealed their hearts from faith, for their hearts are covered with ran. Since their hearts and countless sins have become one. Thus, Allah SWT states, “No! Rather, the stain has covered their hearts of that which they were earning.” The word ran where the hearts of the disbelievers is filled with sin while ghaim is for people of good deeds and ghain for those who are close to Allah SWT. (See Tafsir al-Qur’an al-‘Azim, 4/587)

Ibn al-Qayyim said: “When the heart is stained, then it is difficult for him to accept guidance.” (See Madarij al-Salikin, 2/292)

A person who disobeys Allah SWT and their hearts became hard, then they will choose to ignore, or even feel proud for their transgressions and sins. This is not a general statement and does not apply to everyone, but are only for those who have a clean and healthy heart. (See Syarh al-Arba’in al-Nawawiyyah, pg. 294-295)

Imam al-Qurtubi said: “Sins are actions that make its doer deserving of receiving shame and disgrace.” (See Tafsîr al-Qurthubi 2/20)

Accordingly, for a Mukmin, when he sees an act of sin, he should avoid it the best way he could.

This is stated by Abdullah ibn Mas’ud RA:

‎إِنَّ الْمُؤْمِنَ يَرَى ذُنُوبَهُ كَأَنَّهُ فِي أَصْلِ جَبَلٍ يَخَافُ أَنْ يَقَعَ عَلَيْهِ، وَإِنَّ الْفَاجِرَ يَرَى ذُنُوبَهُ كَذُبَابٍ وَقَعَ عَلَى أَنْفِهِ فَقَالَ بِهِ هَكَذَا فَطَارَ

“The believer sees his sins as if he was at the base of a mountain, fearing that it was about to fall upon him. The wicked person sees his sins as if (they are) flies are hitting his nose" he said: "Like this" - motioning with his hand - "to get them to fly away."

Sunan al-Tirmizi (2497)

We state, although we see them living happily and sometimes even partying in sins, it is just what we can observe while in truth, their hearts are filled with discontentment. The basis of our statement is according to the statement of Allah SWT:

وَمَنْ أَعْرَضَ عَن ذِكْرِي فَإِنَّ لَهُ مَعِيشَةً ضَنكًا وَنَحْشُرُهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ أَعْمَىٰ

“And whoever turns away from My remembrance - indeed, he will have a depressed life, and We will gather him on the Day of Resurrection blind."

Surah Taha (124)

Ibn Kathir said: Whoever turns away from the commandments of Allah SWT and forgets Him, then his life will be filled with problems, discontent and apprehension. Furthermore, his chest will be constricted due to his transgressions even if he seems as though he is happy living in luxury with clothes, food and house, his heart will always be in discontent. (See Mukhtasar Ibn Kathir, 2/497)

Al-Sobuni said: Whoever turns away from My commandments and what I have revealed to My messengers according to the syarak and its rulings, then his life in this world will be hard, although it seems as though he is blessed. (See Sofwah al-Tafasir, 2/229)

May Allah SWT bless us with pleasure and contentment in our lives. We end with the following supplication:

رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الْآخِرَةِ حَسَنَةً وَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ

"Our Lord, give us in this world [that which is] good and in the Hereafter [that which is] good and protect us from the punishment of the Fire."

Surah al-Baqarah (201)