True love…- Part 1
What is true love?
And who should we love and how should we love?
Before we come to what “true” love is, I’ll try to answer the other two questions, insha-Allah:
1) Who should we love?
Well, before we answer this, we need to understand that there are two kinds of love. Shaikh Salih Al-Fawzan states:
“Generally, love is of two kinds: particular and general. The first kind is the love connected with worship, which requires perfect submission and obedience to the worshipped one. This kind is only to be confined to Allah.
The second kind of love may exist in the following forms:
1. It may be an intrinsic attachment such as the hungry craving for food.
2. It may be a feeling of tender concern such as the parental care of a child.
3. It may also be a feeling of amiability such as cordial relations between friends.
All these forms do not necessitate submission or surrender and do not consequently affect due attachment to Allah. Although these forms are not acts of shirk (polytheism), they should be subsequent to real and true emotional attachment to Allah, which is maintained in Allah’s saying:
وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَتَّخِذُ مِن دُونِ اللَّـهِ أَندَادًا يُحِبُّونَهُمْ كَحُبِّ اللَّـهِ ۖ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَشَدُّ حُبًّا لِّلَّـهِ
“And of mankind are some who take (for worship) others besides Allah as rivals (to Allah). They love them as they love Allah. But those who believe, love Allah more (than anything else).” [Surah Al-Baqarah (2) : 165]“
[Quoted from “Guide to Sound Creed”, pg. 75]
I’ll come back to this ayah (verse), insha-Allah, in future parts, because this is one of the most important ayaat pertaining to the love of Allah.
2) How should we love?
Now that we know that our love is to be directed to Allah as He is the one deserving of it, how should we love Him?
Is it just by proclaiming “I love Allah!”
Well, no. As we can see from the previous ayah, even the disbelievers love Allah but Allah says that the believers love Him more. So how exactly do the believers love Allah?
Well, this is answered in another ayah:
قُلْ إِن كُنتُمْ تُحِبُّونَ اللَّـهَ فَاتَّبِعُونِي يُحْبِبْكُمُ اللَّـهُ وَيَغْفِرْ لَكُمْ ذُنُوبَكُمْ ۗ وَاللَّـهُ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ
Say (O Muhammad to mankind): “If you (really) love Allah then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive you of your sins. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Surah Aal-Imran (3) : 31]
It is mentioned that this ayah was revealed after some people “claimed” to be love Allah.
As we can see, this ayah tells us how to PROVE that we love Allah.
And how do we prove it? By following the way of the Prophet (salallahu alaihi wasallam).
Why is that? Let me explain:
If we love Allah, we’ll try to gain His love. He has revealed to the Messenger (salallahu alaihi wasallam) what He loves and what He does not love. Therefore, we need to follow the Messenger’s (salallahu alaihi wasallam) way so that we do that which Allah loves and keep away from that which He does not love. This is how we will gain His love.
Ask yourself: do you claim to love Allah? If so, do you follow the Messenger (salallahu alaihi wasallam)?
Remember: Actions speak louder than words.
Insha-Allah, I’ll talk more about following and loving the Prophet (salallahu alaihi wasallam) in the next part.