**This article was written by an SFC Guest Contributor
Bismillah al-Rahman al-Raheem
In my past two articles, I wrote about gossip, why it is such a bad habit, and some things that we,as Muslimahs, can do to begin to leave the habit behind. In this article, I will be addressing a positive personality trait that I believe, if adopted, will assist in getting away from gossiping.
It is reported that the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم said, “Religion is sincerity, religion is sincerity (Al-Nasihah), religion is sincerity." They said; "To whom, O Messenger of Allah?" He said: "To Allah, to His Book, to His Messenger, to the imams of the Muslims and to their common folk." Narrated in Sunan Nasa'i
In this hadith, five categories that we should display sincerity to are mentioned. While I will touch on each category, I will mainly be addressing being sincere to “common folk”. Who exactly is considered “common folk”? You and I. Those of us within the ummah that don’t occupy a role of power or influence.
Sincerity to Allah عز وجل is the first type of sincerity mentioned in this hadith, and if we can truly cultivate sincerity with Him, then all the rest should come naturally. It may be hard to understand how we can be sincere with Allah عز وجل and His book, the Qur'an, but we can visualize it better with the use of an analogy: We sometimes tend to treat our relationship with Allah عز وجل and the Qur'an the same way we treat a relationship with a person we don't really like. We rarely speak to them, , we avoid picking up the phone phone when they call. The instant we find ourselves in need of something that they can help us with though, all of the sudden, we call them all the time and are very nice to them.
We treat our deen this way as well; we feel lazy to come to salah when we hear the adhaan, we don't make time to read Qur'an during the day or even during the week, but all of a sudden when we are struck with difficult times in our lives our hands are always up in dua and the Qur'an is always open on our desks. If we had a sincere relationship with Allahعز وجل , we would see Him in all of our blessings and thank Him profusely in the good times, and also rely on Him and His book when we find ourselves in trials.
One simple way we can begin to cultivate more sincerity in this relationship is to begin being very open and honest in our dua. Often we try to “hide” from Allahعز وجل , though He knows what is deep in our hearts anyhow, we do not fully say what we need to say when we make dua. We recite dua from memory, but it lacks any substance. To truly begin cultivating sincerity with Allah عز وجل we need to come before Him and recognize our weakness and ask for His help.
The third type of sincerity mentioned here is to the Prophetصلى الله عليه وسلم . This can only be achieved through learning as much as we can about him; seerah, hadith, and his sunnah are all such important areas of study for each and every Muslim. Through studying each of these things we grow not only our knowledge of the Prophetصلى الله عليه وسلم , but our love for him as well. As we begin to cultivate that love for him, we can begin to showcase our sincerity by living the way that he taught us to live. This is, in a small way, one of the things I hope to achieve by my writing here for the Ideal Muslimah section in shaa Allah.
The "Ideal Muslimah" section of Striving For Clarity provides an array of articles, micro-series and short tidbits geared towards highlighting the important characteristics of a Muslim woman.