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We believe that a true and comprehensive understanding of Islam would not be possible without careful recognition of the Prophetic Tradition and the Prophet's Household. And Allah is the Source of Strength.

The Islamic Love Story

Allah's majesty and "godly" qualities include inter-alia,  omnipresence, omnipotence and  omniscience. His presence is such that he is closer to man than his aorta, his authority is such that he says be, and it becomes, his knowledge is such that all knowledge of the seen and the unseen belongs to him.

Allah's independence is such, that neither the worship of a worshipper can increase his glory, nor the sin of a sinner can decrease the might of his kingdom. In a nutshell, man holds no value before God, for he does not need us to praise his glory. It is easier for Allah to create another universe like this one, another man like me, another nation like ours, destroy this earth and bring another one in its place, than it is for us to blink our eyes.

What can man do against God, if he withholds from us our sustenance, our safety, if the earth stops its rotation, if beasts are allowed to rule over us? What can man do if the heaven falls on earth?

Do you not see that Allah has made subservient to you whatsoever is in the earth
and the ships running in the sea by His command? And He withholds the heaven from
falling on the earth except with His permission;
Quran [22:65]

Absolutely nothing without the will of Allah. It is clear that there is nothing man can offer which Allah requires, and there is nothing man can do if Allah wills all the negatives one can imagine and not even imagine, to become a reality. Why then does Allah protect man, provide him with sustenance, prosperity, success and safety?

Continuing the Ayah quoted above;

............... most surely Allah is Compassionate, Merciful to men.
Quran [22:65]

Allah is also omnibenevolent. All good belongs to him. It is this kindness and mercy, that man continues to transgress limits set by Allah and reject his chosen messengers, while Allah continues to, as Mawla Ali (AS) said, pour down raindrops on believers and unbelievers alike.

The God who has everything in his hands and requires nothing, out of his own benevolence, loves some of his men.

The formula to be loved by Allah is not a secret;

Allah does not love the public utterance of hurtful speech unless (it be) by one to whom injustice has been done; and Allah is Hearing, Knowing.
Quran [4:148]

So Allah gave them the reward of this world and better reward of the hereafter and Allah loves those who do good (to others).
Quran [3:148]

Truly Allah knows what they hide and what they manifest; surely He does not love the proud.
Quran [16:23]

And as to those who believe and do good deeds, He will pay them fully their rewards; and Allah does not love the unjust.
Quran [3:57]

Yea, whoever fulfills his promise and guards (against evil)-- then surely Allah loves those who guard (against evil).
Quran [3:76]

Surely Allah will defend those who believe; surely Allah does not love any one who is unfaithful, ungrateful.
Quran [22:38]

And seek by means of what Allah has given you the future abode, and do not
neglect your portion of this world, and do good (to others) as Allah has done good to you,
and do not seek to make mischief in the land, surely Allah does not love the mischiefmakers.
Quran [28:77]

O you who believe! do not forbid (yourselves) the good things which Allah has
made lawful for you and do not exceed the limits; surely Allah does not love those who
exceed the limits.

Quran [5:87]

O children of Adam! attend to your embellishments at every time of prayer, and
eat and drink and be not extravagant; surely He does not love the extravagant.
Quran [7:31]

(They are) listeners of a lie, devourers of what is forbidden; therefore if they come
to you, judge between them or turn aside from them, and if you turn aside from them,
they shall not harm you in any way; and if you judge, judge between them with equity;
surely Allah loves those who judge equitably.
Quran [5:42]

And if you fear treachery on the part of a people, then throw back to them on terms
of equality; surely Allah does not love the treacherous.
Quran [8:58]

Surely Allah loves those who fight in His way in ranks as if they were a firm and compact wall.
Quran [61:4]

...  surely Allah loves those who turn much (to Him), and He loves those who purify themselves.
Quran [2:222]

Say: Obey Allah and the Messenger; but if they turn back, then surely Allah does not love the unbelievers.
Quran [3:32]

Except those of the idolaters with whom you made an agreement, then they have not
failed you in anything and have not backed up any one against you, so fulfill their
agreement to the end of their term; surely Allah loves those who are careful (of their

Quran [9:4]

And how many a prophet has fought with whom were many worshippers of the
Lord; so they did not become weak-hearted on account of what befell them in Allah's
way, nor did they weaken, nor did they abase themselves; and Allah loves the patient.
Quran [3:146]

Thus it is due to mercy from Allah that you (O Prophet) deal with them (the
deserters) gently, and had you been rough, hard hearted, they would certainly have
dispersed from around you; pardon them therefore and ask pardon for them, and take
counsel with them in the affair; so when you have decided, then place your trust in Allah;
surely Allah loves those who trust.

Quran [3:159]

Allah loves those;

  1. Who refrain from hurtful speech in public
  2. Who do good to others
  3. Who are not proud
  4. Who are just
  5. Who guard against evil
  6. Who are faithful and grateful
  7. Who do not spread mischief
  8. Who do not exceed limits
  9. Who are not extravagant
  10. Who are not treacherous
  11. Who fight in his way
  12. Who repent and purify themselves
  13. Who believe
  14. Who are careful of their duty towards the creator and his creations
  15. Who are patient
  16. Who trust Allah

Once man wins this love of a compassionate Allah, then every salat of his will be nothing short of Meraj, then man will conquer his desires and love for everything else and will find himself free from want, by the grace and will of Allah.

It is funny how man loves women, children, wealth and power, yet he does not love his own peace and satisfaction? Does man even understand what it means to win over the love of Allah, the creator of love itself? What does he need who found the love of Allah, and what did he have who lost his love? Nothing!

If who Allah loves, determines the destiny and the purpose of existence of a man, then who a man loves also determines his own destiny and purpose of existence. Why you may ask?

There are two things in this world which come truly and only from the sincerity of one's heart; faith and love. Faith is the platform, the fundamental beliefs whereas love is the strength of conviction in it.

Say: If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive you your faults, and Allah is Forgiving, MercifuL
Quran [3:31]

A man must love Allah. How does a man prove this love? By following Prophet Muhammad (SAW). 

The only problem is, I cannot control who or what I love. I naturally love my parents and my siblings, I naturally end up loving a woman in my life, I naturally love certain foods. I do not like vegetables and even if i try my best to love vegetables, I cannot. I may fall in love with a hindu woman, I cannot help it can i? All of this is true for me, because I am a man, and i am a slave to my nature. But when I become a believer, I surrender my natural desires to the will of him who blessed me with belief. Now when I love, my love will be for the compassionate God. I will love my parents not because it comes natural, but because Allah and his Prophet (SAW) have told so, I will never fall in love with a hindu woman because of her opposition to my prophet (SAW) and my God.

Loving Allah and Prophet Muhammad (SAW) is a proof of faith;

Narated By Anas : The Prophet said "None of you will have faith till he loves me more than his father, his children and all mankind."
Sahih Bukhari Volume 001, Book 002, Hadith Number 014

If one believed and followed Prophet (SAW), yet loved his own parents or wife more than Prophet (SAW), then what was the harm in it? Why did prophet (SAW) said that loving him (SAW) more than everything else is the only sign of faith in the heart of a man? For the very reason that when a man is in love, he is absolutely devoted to his lover and his lover's cause, obeys everything his lover says, gives priority to everything about his lover, loves talking about his lover, tells others about his lover, praises his lover and does everything to keep his lover happy. He remembers his love, fights for his love and even dies for his love. It is only justice that when this lover is Allah and his Prophet (SAW), only then is faith at its true peak.

Tawalla is a part of Islam (a detailed article can be found here);

That is of which Allah gives the good news to His servants, (to) those who believe and do good deeds. Say (Muhammad): I do not ask of you any reward for it but love for my near relatives; and whoever earns good, We give him more of good therein; surely Allah is Forgiving, Grateful.
Quran [42:23]

Why did the Quran order the believers to love the Ahlulbayt (AS) of Muhammad (SAW)? Loving Allah and his Prophet (SAW) was understandable, but why love his (SAW) Ahlulbayt (AS)? Maybe it was to ensure that when the forces of this world would collide with the Ahlulbayt (AS) after the demise of Prophet (SAW), and people would be confused as to which side to follow, a side where Qurans will be on spears and a side for which companions of the Prophet (SAW) would fight for and a side which would be lead by the wife of Prophet (SAW) and a side where thousands of Hajis and Namazis will surround a caravan of 72 rebels, then this love would guide a believer to support the side of Haq, the side which held the banner of Islam.

Not to forget that the banner of Islam was also given to he who loved Allah and his messenger (SAW) and he who was loved by Allah and his messenger;

Narrated Sahl: On the day (of the battle) of Khaibar the Prophet said, "Tomorrow I will give the flag to somebody who will be given victory (by Allah) and who loves Allah and His Apostle and is loved by Allah and His Apostle." So, the people wondered all that night as to who would receive the flag and in the morning everyone hoped that he would be that person. Allah's Apostle asked, "Where is 'Ali?" He was told that 'Ali was suffering from eye-trouble, so he applied saliva to his eyes and invoked Allah to cure him. He at once got cured as if he had no ailment. The Prophet gave him the flag. 'Ali said, "Should I fight them till they become like us (i.e. Muslim)?" The Prophet said, "Go to them patiently and calmly till you enter the land. Then, invite them to Islam, and inform them what is enjoined upon them, for, by Allah, if Allah gives guidance to somebody through you, it is better for you than possessing red camels."
Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 253

Before going ahead, I must ask you that that if Prophet (SAW) prayed for victory, if he (SAW) prayed that Allah bestows victory of Khyber on any of his companion, then wouldn't his prayers get accepted? Will not any companion of Prophet (SAW) conquer Khyber through the wasila of the prayers of prophet Muhammad (SAW)? Why was then, Ali (AS) required to do the job? Maybe because the flag was not important for the victory of Khyber, for that, Rasool (SAW) himself was sufficient. The flag of Khyber was to show who loved Allah and his Rasool (SAW), and who was loved by Allah and his Rasool (SAW). Ali (AS) carried this flag, the flag of choice of Allah and his Prophet (SAW). The opponents of Ali (AS) in any battle field fought against Ali as well as this flag.

The love of a man can make him achieve salvation, as well as destroy him.

During the time of Prophet Yahya (a.s), there lived a king by the name of Hirodis, who was fond of him (a.s) and considered the Prophet to be a just and righteous person. There was an adulteress with whom this king had been having an illicit relationship; as she became old, she began to ornament her daughter and present her before the king, who eventually fell in love with her and desired to marry her. He questioned Prophet Yahya (a.s) about the issue who, on the basis of the religion of Prophet Isa (a.s), declared it to be unlawful. Consequently the adulteress harboured resentment and malice towards Prophet Yahya (a.s). One day, observing the king to be in a state of intoxication, she adorned her daughter and sent her before him. Seeing her, the king sought to gratify himself but the daughter said: “I shall submit myself to you only upon the condition that you sever Yahya's head from his body.” The king, in his state of inebriation, agreed and upon his instance, Prophet Yahya (a.s) was beheaded.

According to another tradition, the king desired to enter into marriage with his niece, by the name of Hirodiya, but Prophet Yahya (a.s) prohibited such a marriage as a result of which the lady coveted the Prophet's death.

Imam Baqir (a.s) said: “Yahya's (a.s) killer was an illegitimate child, as were the killers of Ali and Husain Ibn Ali (a.s)).
Tarikh-e-Anbiya, vol. 2, pg. 284

The love/infatuation of an adulteress lead to the murder of a Prophet. Was that love worth it?

And when We made a covenant with you and raised the mountain over you: Take
hold of what We have given you with firmness and be obedient. They said: We hear and
disobey. And they were made to imbibe (the love of) the calf into their hearts on account of their unbelief Say: Evil is that which your belief bids you if you are believers.
Quran [2:93]

The calf had no religious authority, controlled nothing, following the calf was not ordered by their prophet Musa (AS) (who had shown them all the signs sufficient to prove his truth), yet due to what their own hands (their insincerity, arrogance, disbelief, lust, impatience, cowardice) had earned them, love of that calf was imbibed into their hearts.

This is how Allah destroys the good deeds of someone rejected by destiny itself;

And whoever turns himself away from the remembrance of the Beneficent Allah,
We appoint for him a Shaitan, so he becomes his associate.
And most surely they (shaitans) turn them away from the path, and they think that they are guided aright:
Quran [43:36-37]

We are to love Allah, his Prophet (SAW) and his Ahlulbayt (AS). Why does a man then love calves, those who have no religious authority, who control nothing and who are not ordered to be loved and followed by the Quran and Prophet (SAW)?

The companions (RA) who supported Islam are to be revered. If they loved and followed Allah, his prophet (SAW) and his Ahlulbayt (AS) and sent durood on them, then they will be rewarded, if not, then they are accountable for their deeds. The sufis and the qalanders might have been pious people, and if  they loved and followed Allah, his prophet (SAW) and his Ahlulbayt (AS) and sent durood on them, then they will be rewarded, if not, then they are accountable for their deeds. The ulemas, Ayatullahs, Muftis, Maulanas, Zakireens are to be respected. If they loved and followed Allah, his prophet (SAW) and his Ahlulbayt (AS) and sent durood on them, then they will be rewarded, if not, then they are accountable for their deeds. Our parents and elders are to be respected. If they loved and followed Allah, his prophet (SAW) and his Ahlulbayt (AS) and sent durood on them, then they will be rewarded, if not, then they are accountable for their deeds. What is this division in Islam all about then?

Those who love the Pharaoh love what he stood for, loved his actions and would strive to achieve the same. Those who love the messenger love what his message was and would strive for the success of the same. Loving a pious man/woman can effect us spiritually and loving a vicious one can derail our senses in seconds. 

We must be very careful who we love, for it dictates our life's path, controls our destiny and defines who we are, what we are. Love your own arrogance and become iblis, love Hussain (AS) and become a martyr.

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