Nullifiers of the deeds (Riya’a) – Sunday,1st Jan. 2012
Riya’ is the hidden shirk.
Mahmood Bin Lubaid (Radhiya Allahu anhu) narrated that Allah’s Messenger (Salla Allahu ‘alaihi wa salam) said: “Indeed, the thing that I fear most for you all is the minor shirk.” He was asked about it and he said: “Ar-Riya’ (Showing off).
Allah will say to them on the Day of Resurrection after recompensing the people for their deeds – Go to those whom you were showing off our deeds to, let them recompense you. [Reported by Ahmed and authenticated by al-Albani in Saheeh at-Tagheeb wat-Tarheeb no. 32)
Riya’ means: A man pretends in front of the people that he is pious, or performing righteous good deeds,perfecting his Salaat,etc, so that he may be praised or seen.
Riya’ is from Ro’yah: The man who loves to be seen by people while performing the good deed, so that he may be praised.
The difference between Riya’ and Sum’ah
Riya’ is to show of the deeds that can be seen which apparently are for Allah’s Sake and inwardly for someone else, such as Salaat, Sadaqah.
Sum’ah is to show off the utterances that can be heard which apparently are for Allah’s Sake and the intention is for someone else such as recitation, Dhikr, preaching and other kinds of statements. The intention of the person is to make the people listen to his talk so that they praise him.
The Prophet (Salla Allahu ‘alaihi wa salam) said that Riya’ is hidden shirk because shirk is of two kinds:
1. Apparent – in apparent deeds and statements
e.g, slaughtering for other than Allah, calling unto other than Allah.
This kind of shirk can be seen and heard by people.
2. Hidden – which the people are not aware of it because it is in the heart. No-one knows about it except Allah.
This shirk is in the intention and will of man.
The Prophet (Salla Allahu ‘alaihi wasalam) feared it for his Companions who are masters of Emigrants and Ansaar, who are the best of this nation, despite of their perfect knowledge, strong faith, correct intentions. We should contemplate in our state and know that we are all returning to Allah, our destination is to Him.
Riya’ nullifies the deed.
Abu Hurayrah (Radhiya Allahu anhu) narrated that Allah’s Messenger (Salla Allahu ‘alaihi wa salam) said: “Allah said, “ I am the freest of partners having no need of association (ash-shirk). Whoever does a deed associating something in it other than Me, I have forsaken him and his association.” [Muslim].
Riya’ is a reason to enter the hell-fire.
Narrated Abu Hurairah (Radia Allaahu ‘anhu): I heard Allah’s Messenger (Salla Allaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) saying: “The first among the people whom Allah will judge is a man who is martyred. He is brought and is reminded of Allah’s blessings and he acknowledges them. Allah asks him, “What did you do with these blessings?”. He replies “I fought in your cause until I was martyred.” Allah will say, “You told a lie, you fought in order to be said ‘He is courageous, and then Allah (Subhanaahu wa Ta’ala) commands the Angels to take him, so he is dragged on his face till he is thrown into the Hell fire. Another man acquired the knowledge and taught it (to others) and he recited the Qur’an. He is brought and is reminded of Allah’s blessings and he acknowledges them. Allah (Subhanaahu wa Ta’ala) asks him, “What did you do with them?”. He replies “I acquired knowledge and taught it to the people and I recited the Qur’an for your sake.” Allah will say, “You told a lie, you acquired knowledge to be called ” ‘Alim” and recited the Qur’an to be called “Qaari” , and then Allah (Subhanaahu wa Ta’ala) commands the Angels to take him, so he is dragged on his face till he is thrown into the Hell fire. A third man who Allah broadened for him His provision and granted him different kinds of properties. He was brought and was reminded with the blessings of Allah. He acknowledges them all, then Allah asks him “What did you do regarding them?” He replies: There is no way in Allah’s Cause which Allah loves but I have spent for your sake. Allah (Subhanaahu wa Ta’ala) will say: “You said a lie. You did that in order to be called Generous, and it is said. Then he was commanded to be taken by the Angels on his face, then thrown into the Hellfire.” [Muslim]