Hadith (1) / Intention determines the value of actions
محمد لهلال / Intention determines the value of actions
Intention determines the value of actions
On the authority of Abu Hafs ‘Umar Ibn al-Khattab, commander of the believers who said: I heard the Messenger of God, peace and blessings be upon him, saying, “Surely, all deeds are but driven by intentions; verily, every person shall reap what he intended. Thus, he whose migration was for God and His Messenger, [then] his migration was for God and His Messenger; and he whose migration was to achieve some worldly benefit or to take a woman in marriage, his migration was for that which he migrated.” The hadith was narrated by al-Bukhari and Muslim.
Meanings and Lessons:
- “Anniya” (intention) is not something verbal to be uttered so that it can be legally valid, but it is an inherent expression of the heart and soul; only God knows its nature and knows whether it is truthful.
- It is obvious that a person’s activity, be it physical, behavioral, spiritual, or whatever is based on a prior intention. And for a deed to be accepted by God, the Almighty, it must first and foremost be meant to please God, and it must be compatible with the Sharia law.
- The intention might deflect during one’s action, so we should be wary not to spoil the initial intention. We can maintain it only if the soul is alert through constant checking of the heart to drive away Satanic whispers and the ego’s impulses. We also have to be cautious not to lose everything at the end by crediting the success to our own efforts, skill and ingenuity, for without God’s Will, we cannot achieve anything.
- Adhering to the company of believers is a source of inspiration to make your intentions purified and attached to lofty goals, and what is loftier a goal than seeking the pleasure of God and nearness to Him? This does not mean seeking licit worldly benefits is unacceptable, but every benefit we acquire should converge into the intention of seeking the pleasure of God; again, we should not lose direction.
- Migration to God entails life-long journeying to Him, seeking His pleasure and nearness. Here, we are talking about a long strenuous ascent to reach higher stations of faith and braving all sorts of obstacles that might obstruct this ascent, be it psychological, social, economic or political.
- Migration to God and His Messenger entails getting rid of entrenched individualistic habits that seek personal salvation and not taking part into collective endeavors that yearn to recover the dignity of the Muslim community, attain prosperity and dispense justice for all.
- Migration to God and His Messenger entails collective exploration and following of the Prophetic method in tackling different delicate life issues, especially those related to the education of the Ummah (Muslim community) and how to lay foundations of Islamic justice-based governance.