I thought of this the other day when I was scolded by someone about a thing that I see him or her doing all the time. I thought that I should make them aware of their actions and how it wasn't in line with their speech. Allah says in the Qur'an,
"Oh you who believe, why do you say that which you do not do? Most hated is it in the Sight of Allah that you say that which you do not do!"
People every day talk about practicing what you preach, but how many of us that say this actually do it? Think about it. Of all the people that you have ever tried to remind of Allah or of some aspect of Islam, how much of the advice that you give out do you actually practice yourself? This reflection made me think about what the Prophet (salAllahu alayhi wasallam) has said in a hadith, "Those who believe, let them speak good or keep silent."
SubhanAllah, Allah's Messenger (salAllahu alayhi wasallam) was truly as-Sadiq al-Ameen.
Today, people in the West always talk about "keeping it real." This psychology is to be real with people. To not front or put up some kind of false personality of who you really are. Yet, how many of us are living in a shell?.
The worst thing about it is that it is so obvious for people to see right through our fakeness. Children are the best at this. If you want to know if a person is sincere or not, just have them interact with children for a period of time. You will be able to tell if the kids like that person or not if they are "true" so to speak.
As a Muslim, we are supposed to be "real" all the time. It is part of our deen to be that way. This blessed month is one where we have the opportunity to find out who we really are. The Shayateen are locked up, so any foul behavior or actions on our parts can be attributed only to our inner state.
This gives us the opportunity to sharpen our states to one that is pleasing to Allah. It gives us the ability to solidify consistency in our worship and recitation of the Qur'an. It enables us the opportunity to correct any of our actions, including speech, overeating, bad thoughts, places that we go, things we are inclined to do.
This reminds me of a saying that is attributed to Hasan Al-Basri, the great illuminary from the third generation after the Prophet (salAllahu alayhi wasallam). He was quoted as saying that for twenty years he did not say a word or retract from saying a word except that he first thought if it was pleasing to Allah.
As the saying continues, he repeats this statement for using all of the senses. Whenever I am reminded of that, I reflect on how much certainty in the unseen Hasan (radiAllahu anhu) had.
We must take benefit from this blessed month of Ramadan. If we do not, then we should cease from all the empty promises and speeches. It is said that Allah will not change a people until they first change what is in their own selves. I ask Allah to forgive us for our sins and to purify our hearts from all the disease and filth that we have accumulated on them.
I ask Allah to give us an opening and victory over our reproachful selves and in this dunya as well as the hereafter. I ask Allah to guide our families to Islam and to preserve us. May the Peace, Blessings and Mercy of Allah be upon His final Messenger Muhammad. All Praise is to Allah, Lord of all the Worlds.