Al-ihsaan (Perfection) : It’s Categories and Levels – Shaykh Fawzan | Dawud Burbank [Audio|En]

Bismillaah

Sharh-ul-Usool-ith-Thalaathah : Lesson 36 – Part B & Lesson 37
Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzan | Dawud Burbank [Audio|English]

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The Third Level is al-Ihsaan 

The Definition of Ihsaan 

Imaam Muhammad ibn ‘Abdul-Wahhaab (rahimahullaah) said:

:المرتبة الثالثة : الإحسان ، ركن واحد ، وهو 

أن تعبد الله كأنك تراه ، فإن لم تكن تراه فإنه يراك

The third level is al-ihsaan. It is a single pillar and it is: «That you worship Allaah as if you were seeing Him, and even though you do not see Him, He certainly sees you.»46


[46]: Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzan’s Explanation :

Al-Ihsaan in the language means to perfect something and complete it. It is derived from al-husun which means al-jamaal (beauty), the opposite of ugliness.

And it is divided into (three) categories: 

  • Firstly: Al-Ihsaan (Perfection) of what lies between the servant and his Lord. This is what is meant (in this book here). 
  • Secondly: Al-Ihsaan (Perfection) of what is between the servant and the rest of the people. 
  • Thirdly: Doing well and perfecting what you do. When a person makes something or does an action, then it is obligatory upon him that he perfects it and does it completely. 

[1] Ihsaan (perfection) of what lies between the servant and his Lord


The first type is ihsaan (perfection) of what lies between the servant and his Lord. The Messenger sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam explained it when Jibreel asked him in the presence of the companions as will follow. He said:

«Ihsaan is that you worship Allaah as if you were seeing Him,
and even though you do not see Him, He certainly sees you

So ihsaan between the servant and his Lord is his perfecting the action which Allaah has made a duty upon him, that he does it correctly, purely and sincerely for the Face of Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic.

So, an action in which there is ihsaan between the servant and his Lord is that which is done sincerely for Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, and done with the following of the Messenger sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam.

Al- ihsaan is of two levels :

The Prophet sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam made clear that ihsaan is of two levels, one of them being higher than the other: 

The first level is that you worship Allaah as if you were seeing Him such that your certainty and eemaan in Allaah reaches such a level that it is as if you are actually seeing Allaah with your eyes. You have no hesitancy or doubt, rather it is as if Allaah is in front of you, He the Perfect and Most High, and you are seeing Him openly. Whoever reaches this level has reached the limit of ihsaan. You worship Allaah as if you are seeing Him on account of the completeness of certainty and sincerity, which is as if you are seeing Allaah with your eyes.

Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, will not be seen in this world, rather He will only be seen in the Hereafter. However, you see Him with your heart to the extent that it is as if you are seeing Him with your eyes. Therefore, He will reward the people of ihsaan in the Hereafter that they will see Him, He the Perfect and Most High. This is since they used to worship Him as if they were seeing Him in this world. So, Allaah rewards them by giving them the opportunity to see Him with their eyes in the abode of bliss. He, the Most High, said:

لِّلَّذِينَ أَحْسَنُوا الْحُسْنَىٰ وَزِيَادَةٌ

«For the people of ihsaan there will be the best reward of Paradise and something extra.» [10:26]

Something extra is looking upon the Face of Allaah. The reason is that they perfected their deeds in this world, so Allaah gave them the best reward which is Paradise. And He will give them an increase which is seeing Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic. So therefore, you worship Allaah as if you are actually witnessing Him, upon love and longing to meet Him, He the Perfect and Most High. You feel delight in obedience to Him and you feel calm and obedience to Him, He the Perfect and Most High. You eagerly desire obedience to Him. This is the path of the people of ihsaan. 

The second level: If you do not reach this tremendous level (first level), then you worship Him upon the path of al-muraqabah (watchfulness) such that you know that Allaah sees you, knows your condition, and knows what lies within yourself. Therefore, it is not befitting that you should disobey Him and contradict His command when He sees and observes you. This is a good state, however, it is less than the first one. So, as long as you know that He sees you, then you therefore perfect your worship of Him and you do it well, because you know that Allaah is seeing you. And for Allaah is the Highest example. If you were in front of a created being who had status and he commanded you with a command, and you were carrying this matter out in front of him and he was looking at you, would it be befitting that you be negligent in the performance of this action? 

So in summary, ihsaan is of two levels: 

  • The level of witnessing with the heart: It is that you worship Allaah as if you are seeing Him from the strength of certainty and eemaan. It is as you are seeing Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, with your eyes. 
  • The second level: It is that you worship Allaah knowing that He sees you and observes you, therefore, you do not disobey Him and contradict His command, He the Perfect and Most High.

This is the level of al-ihsaan and it is highest of the levels of the religion. Whoever reaches it has reached the highest of the levels of the religion. Before it is the level of eemaan, and before that is the level of al-Islaam.

The deen has a number of domains: 

The first domain: al-Islaam. It is wide to such an extent that the hypocrite enters within it and is called a Muslim and is treated like a Muslim, because he has submitted to Islaam outwardly. So therefore, he enters within the domain of Islaam. And the person who is weak in eemaan [enters the domain of Islaam], but he has nothing from eemaan except a mustard seed of it. 

The second domain: It is more restricted and more specific – the domain of al-eemaan. The hypocrite in belief does not enter into it whatsoever. Rather, only the people of eemaan enter into it, and they are two categories: those who are complete in eemaan and those who are deficient in eemaan. So, the sinful believer and dutiful believer both enter into it. 

The third domain: It is more restricted than the second one – the domain of al-ihsaan. It just as the Prophet sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam made clear. No one will enter into it except the people of complete eemaan.


The Evidence for al-Ihsaan 

And the proof is His saying, He the Most High:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ مَعَ الَّذِينَ اتَّقَوا وَّالَّذِينَ هُم مُّحْسِنُونَ

«Allaah is with those who fear Him and are dutiful to Him; and He is with those who are people of ihsaan.» [16:128]

And His saying, He the Most High:

وَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى الْعَزِيزِ الرَّحِيمِ الَّذِي يَرَاكَ حِينَ تَقُومُ وَتَقَلُّبَكَ فِي السَّاجِدِينَ إِنَّهُ هُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ

«And place your reliance upon the All-Mighty, the Bestower of Mercy. He who sees you when you stand to pray. And who sees your movements along with those who pray along with you. Indeed! He is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing.» [26:217-220]

And His saying, He the Most High:

وَمَا تَكُونُ فِي شَأْنٍ وَمَا تَتْلُو مِنْهُ مِن قُرْآنٍ وَلَا تَعْمَلُونَ مِنْ عَمَلٍ إِلَّا كُنَّا عَلَيْكُمْ شُهُودًا إِذْ تُفِيضُونَ فِيهِ ۚ وَمَا يَعْزُبُ عَن رَّبِّكَ مِن مِّثْقَالِ ذَرَّةٍ فِي الْأَرْضِ وَلَا فِي السَّمَاءِ وَلَا أَصْغَرَ مِن ذَٰلِكَ وَلَا أَكْبَرَ إِلَّا فِي كِتَابٍ مُّبِينٍ

«And you are not (O Muhammad sallallaahu`alaihiwasallam) engaged in any matter nor do you recite the Book of Allaah, – nor do you do any action (O people), except that We are witness in your deeds when you do them. And not even that which is of the weight of the tiniest ant is hidden from your Lord on the earth or in the heavens. Nor is there anything smaller than that or greater than it except that it is written in a Clear Book [10:61] [47]


[47] : Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzan’s Explanation :

This is the proof for the first level of al-ihsaan:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ مَعَ الَّذِينَ اتَّقَوا وَّالَّذِينَ هُم مُّحْسِنُونَ

«Allaah is with those who fear Him and are dutiful to Him, and He is with those who are people of ihsaan.» [16:128]

The aayah proves that Allaah is with the people of ihsaan. They are those who worship Allaah as if they were seeing Him, so Allaah is with them in a specific sense of Ma`iyyah (Allah being with creation) – the Ma`iyyah with regard to aiding, helping, and tawfeeq (guiding them to and granting them attainment of correctness).

And His saying, He the Most High:

وَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى الْعَزِيزِ الرَّحِيمِ الَّذِي يَرَاكَ حِينَ تَقُومُ وَتَقَلُّبَكَ فِي السَّاجِدِينَ

«And place your reliance upon the All-Mighty, the Bestower of Mercy. He who sees you when you stand to pray. And who sees your movements along with those who pray along with you.» [26:217-219]

This is a proof for the second level. This is a proof for his saying [sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam]: «Then, He certainly sees you

«And place your reliance» Meaning: trust your affairs «to the All-Mighty, the Bestower of Mercy» He is Allaah, the Perfect and Most High.

«When you stand to pray» You stand for worship and the prayer.

«And who sees your movements along with those who pray along with you» He sees you whilst you are performing your rukoo` (bowing) and whilst you are performing your sajdah (prostration). He sees you in all the states of worship; standing, bowing, and prostrating. He, the Perfect and Most High, sees you.

«Indeed! He is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing» The One who hears your sayings. The One who knows your sayings, He the Perfect and Most High.

And His saying, He the Most High:

وَمَا تَكُونُ فِي شَأْنٍ وَمَا تَتْلُو مِنْهُ مِن قُرْآنٍ وَلَا تَعْمَلُونَ مِنْ عَمَلٍ إِلَّا كُنَّا عَلَيْكُمْ شُهُودًا إِذْ تُفِيضُونَ فِيهِ

«And you (O Muhammad sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam) are not engaged in any matter nor do you recite the Book of Allaah, – nor do you do any action (O people), except that We are witness in your deeds when you do them.» [10:61]

This is a proof for the second level.

«And you (O Muhammad sallallaahu`alaihiwasallam) are not engaged in any matter» This is an address to the Messenger sallallaahu`alaihiwasallam. In any affair from your affairs, from the affairs of worship or other than it – all of your actions and your movements – you will not be engaged in any affair at all.

«Nor do you recite from it (i.e. Book of Allaah)» Meaning: from Allaah, because the Qur`aan is from Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic. Or the pronoun could refer back to the affair, so the meaning would be: From the affairs which you are engaged in is recitation of the Qur`aan.

«Nor do you do (O people)» This is [an address] for all of the nation, for the Messenger sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam and other than him.

«Any action» Meaning: Any action from the actions, whether good or bad.

«Except that We are witness [in your deeds]» We are seeing you, observing you, and witnessing you. This is a proof for his saying sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam: «Then indeed, He sees you

«When you do them» You are carrying it out and you are doing it. So, this gives a proof for the second level from the levels of ihsaan, in that He, the Majestic and Most High, witnesses the action of every doer of an action. He, the Perfect and Most High, sees him, knows him, and observes him. Nothing is hidden from him.

إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يَخْفَىٰ عَلَيْهِ شَيْءٌ فِي الْأَرْضِ وَلَا فِي السَّمَاءِ

«Nothing whatsoever in the earth or in the heavens is hidden from Allaah.» [3:5]


[2] Ihsaan between the person and rest of the creation


As for ihsaan between the servant and the creation, then its meaning is: doing good to them and withholding from harming them.

Such that you feed the hungry person, cloth the person without clothing, assist the needy person with your position, and that you intercede for the one who needs to be interceded for. You do that which is good with all the different aspects of good. You are hospitable to the guest and you are generous towards the neighbor. Nothing but good emanates from you towards the neighbor, and you withhold harming him. So, no harm comes from you towards him or towards anyone else.

  1. From the people, there are who are such that nothing but harm comes from them, and
  2. From the people there are those whom harm and good comes. And
  3. From the people, there are those whom nothing but good comes from them. This is the highest of the levels.

Doing good towards the people and withholding harm from them is ihsaan (good and fine treatment) towards the people:

أَحْسِنُوا ۛ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِينَ

«Do good. Allaah loves al-Muhsineen (the doers of good).» [2:195]

Even towards the animals, it is obligatory that you treat them well and make available for them whatever they need and that you withhold harming them and that you are gentle with them. This is from ihsaan towards the animals.

Even a person who is going to be rightfully executed, you should not torture him, rather, you should execute him in a fine and tranquil manner. A person who is obligatory to execute, and someone it is obligatory to carry a hadd (prescribed punishment) upon, then it is carried out upon him with gentleness. There is to be no mutilation, no torture, and no beating to death.

He sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam said:

»إن الله كتب الإحسان على كل شيء ، فإذا قتلتم فأحسنوا القتلة ، وإذا ذبحتم فأحسنوا الذبح«

«Allaah has obligated ihsaan with regard to everything. So, when you kill, then kill in a fine manner. And when you slaughter an animal, then slaughter in a good manner

[Reported by Muslim no. 1955 as a hadeeth of Shaddaad bin Aws, radiy Allaahu `anhu.]

So, [the principle of ihsaan applies] to execution or other than it from that which necessitates prescribed punishment.

«When you slaughter» Meaning: when you slaughter animals which are to be eaten, then slaughter in a fine manner:

» وليحد  أحدكم شفرته ، وليرح ذبيحته «

«Let one of you sharpen his knife and give relief to the animal which he is slaughtering

Therefore, you are to treat with ihsaan even the animals. Allaah forgave the prostitute woman from the People of Israaeel on account that she gave a drink of water to a dog which had its tongue hanging out from thirst. So, she gave it water to drink and Allaah thanked her for that and forgave her, her sin.[2] This is a tremendous sin and it is prostitution, meaning: zinaa (fornication). But Allaah forgave her on account of that – because she treated the thirsty animal in a fine manner.

So how about something other than a dog? If you were to treat a hungry person from the Muslims with ihsaan, or from the descendants of Aadam, even if he is a disbeliever – if you were to treat him well, then Allaah, the Majestic and Most High will thank you for that fine treatment. He, the Most High, said:

أَحْسِنُوا ۛ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِينَ

«Do good. Allaah loves al-Muhsineen (the doers of good).» [2:195]


[3] Ihsaan (Perfection) of the Action


The third type: It is perfection of the action. Whatever action you do, it is obligatory that you perfect it and not so that it should be said: “So-and-so has done such-and-such very well.” There occurs in the hadeeth:

» إن الله يحب إذا عمل أحدكم عملا أن يتقنه «

«Allaah loves that one when one of you does an action that he perfects it

[Reported by al-Bayhaqee in Shu`ab al-Eemaan 4/334 no. 5313 and no. 5314 from a hadeeth of `Aa.ishah, radiy Allaahu `anha. [Declared hasan (good) by Shaikh al-Albaanee in Saheeh al-Jaami`. He spoke about it in Silsilatul-Ahaadeeth asSaheehah no. 1113].


Footnotes:

[2] Refer to al-Bukhaaree no. 3467, Muslim no. 2245 as a hadeeth of Aboo Hurayrah, radiy Allaahu `anhu.

Sharh-ul-Usool-ith-Thalaathah. Explanation of the Three Fundamental Principles of Imaam Muhammad ibn ‘Abdil-Wahhaab by Shaykh Saalih ibn Fowzaan al-Fowzaan hafizahullaah. Translated by  Daawood  Burbank, rahimahullaah

Posted with kind permission from Dawud Burbank rahimahullaah

Listen to the Full Audio Series:
Sharh Usool-ith-Thalaathah – Shaykh Fawzan | Dawud Burbank

Book Study Resources – Three Fundamental Principles

Related Links:

https://abdurrahman.org/belief/imaan-faith-pillars

The Station of Taqwa and Ihsaan – Shaykh Rabee bin Haadee

So this sermon consists of the advice to fear Allaah, which is necessary and it is not exemplified except in the lives of the righteous, truthful scholars as in the saying of Allaah Ta’ala:

<<It is only those who have knowledge among His slaves that fear Allaah. >>[Fatir: 28]

Fear Allaah Azza wa Jal so you can reach this level and learn so that you can reach that status; because the one who knows the correct ‘Aqeedah, Manhaj and rulings, manners and behaviour springing from the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of the Messenger – sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam – then he is the one who fears AllaahAzza wa Jal and Taqwa is attained with all of these matters.

So when these matters – which we have mentioned – are acknowledged then the slave is driven to the Taqwa of Allaah Azza wa Jal, to having fear of Him and being aware of Him in every time, place and situation.  This is a great station which is the station of al-Ihsaan (perfection of worship).

That you worship Allaah as if you see Him and if you cannot see Him then know that He sees you.'[1]

This station of al-Ihsaan (perfection of worship) is that a person has certainty that Allaah sees him and that Allaah hears all he says and hears; the beating of his heart, the feelings of his heart and what he thinks to himself.   AllaahSubhanahu Wa Ta’ala knows it and hears it and He sees his movements and when he is still.

So the true believer regards Allaah with true greatness and he acknowledges that Allaah Subhanah hears everything that he says and knows everything he discusses, or thinks to himself and that Allaah has:

<<Angels Kirâman (honourable) Kâtibîn writing down (your deeds). They know all that you do. >> [al-Infitar: 11-12]

So if these distinguished feelings are found in the soul of a believer then he has acquired the characteristic of Taqwa which causes him to keep away from sinning,Shirk, Bida’ and superstitions and he acquires the station of al-Ihsaan(perfection of worship) since he is aware of Allaah and he feels that Allaah sees him and he cannot hide anything of his affairs from Allaah not a little nor a lot, not even the like of an atom.

This is a noble awareness and distinguished feeling which pushes one -InshAllaah – to the Taqwa of Allaah.  This cannot be reached except for the one who knows the correct ‘Aqeedah, the correct rulings of Halaal and Haraam and knows the commands and prohibitions, the promise and the warnings from the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allaah – alayhis Sallat wa SallamThey are the ones who deserve the praise of Allaah – Tabaraka wa Ta’ala – He said; about them:

<< It is only those who have knowledge among His slaves that fear Allaah.>> [Fatir: 28]

And He said:

<< Allaah will exalt in degree those of you who believe and those who have been granted knowledge. >> [al-Mujadilah: 11]

So strive to be from these types of people: i.e. that you combine knowledge and action.  That is the fruit of correct knowledge and having the Taqwa of Allaah – Tabaraka wa Ta’ala – and being aware of Him.

Excerpted fromEncouragement to have Affection and Friendliness and Warning Against Splitting up and Differing – Shaykh Rabee bin Haadee al-Madkhalee, Translated by Abbas Abu Yahya

Inciting The Muslims To Reach Ihsaan – Abu Muhammad al Maghribee [Audio|En]

Delivered on  15th August 2015

This lecture is on Ihsaan, based on a work by Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan hafidhahullah.

Listen / Download Mp3 Here (Time 57:49)
[audio https://salafiaudio.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/inciting-the-muslims-to-reach-ihsaan-150815-abu-muhammad-al-maghribee.mp3]

Posted from: http://followthesalaf.com

Related Links :

Ihsaan is a Separate Pillar – Shaikh Muhammad ibn Abdul-Wahhab al-Wasabi

Al Ihsaan – Shaykh ibn Uthaymeen

Ihsaan – Hadeeth of Jibreel – Dr. Saleh As-Saleh [Audio|En]

An-Nawawi 40 Hadith – 02 – Hadeeth Jibreel – Ihsaan (Download Mp3)
[audio http://salafiaudio.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/an-nawawi-40-hadith-02-hadeeth-jibreel-ihsaan-saleh-as-saleh.mp3]

Posted from : Hadeeth – An Nawawi 40 Hadeeth – Dr Saleh as-Saleh [Audio Series|En]

Ihsaan is a Separate Pillar – Shaikh Muhammad ibn Abdul-Wahhab al-Wasabi

Click the Below Link to read the PDF Document

al-Qawl-ul- Mufeed Fee Adillatit-Tawhid – 15 – Muhammad al-Wasabi [PDF]

Source: Lessons on Tawhid – Approximately 50 Classes – from Dar-ul-Hadith, Dammaj, Yemen

Al Ihsaan – Shaykh ibn Uthaymeen

Shaykh Muhammad ibn Salih al-`Uthaymeen
Explanation of the Three Fundamental Principles of Islaam
© 1997 al-Hidaayah

Al-Ihsaan is the opposite of behaving badly, and it means that a person strives to do what is good and to repel harmful things. So he strives to benefit the servants of Allaah through his wealth, position, knowledge and his person. So as for the case of doing good with ones wealth, then he spends and gives in charity, and pays the zakaat, and the best of the types of doing good through wealth is the zakaat since it is one of the pillars of Islaam, and one of its great foundations. A person’s Islaam will not be complete without it. It is the charity most loved by Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, and that is followed by that which it is obligatory upon a person to spend upon his wife, mother, father, children, brothers, children of his brothers, sisters, paternal uncles, paternal aunts, maternal aunts, and so on. Then by charity given to the poor and to the rest of those deserving of charity – such as students of knowledge for example.

As for the case of doing good by means of ones position, then it is that people are found in different levels. Some of them have status with someone in authority and so strive to benefit the people by means of his position. So if a man comes to him and requests that he should intercede for him with the one in authority then he does so, either to repel some harm from him or to attain some good for him, As for doing good by means of his knowledge, then it is that he strives to pass on his knowledge to Allaah’s servants, in open and private gatherings and assemblies. Even if people sit socially, to drink coffee, then it pertains to good and fine behaviour that he should teach the people. Even if you are in a public gathering it is from what is good that you teach the people. However wisdom is to be used in this matter. So you should not weary the people making it a habit that every single time you sit in a gathering you admonish and address the people, since the Prophet used to give them admonition now and then, and not too frequently. This is because the souls become weary and bored. When they become bored they become languid and weak and may even come to dislike what is good merely because of the frequency with which the per son stands and addresses them.

As for seeking to benefit the people with ones person, then the Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam said: “… that you help a man to mount and ride his riding beast, or you lift up his luggage on to it for him, is a charity” [Reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. Transl. 4/90-94/no. 161) and Muslim (Eng. transl. 2/483-484/ no. 2204)]. So you help this man to carry his luggage, or you guide him to the correct road to take and so on, all of this pertains to ihsaan. So this is with regard to striving to do good to the servants of Allaah.

As for ihsaan in the worship of Allaah, then it is that you worship Allaah as if you were seeing Him, as the Prophet ( said. So worship done in this way, that a person worships his Lord as if he were actually seeing Him is worship that is accompanied by yearning and seeking. So a person will find that his soul encourages him upon worship done in this way, since he is yearning for the one he loves. Therefore he worships Him as if he were seeing Him, and he directs his heart to Him and turns to Him and seeks to draw near to Him, He the One free of all imperfections and the Most High.

“Then even though you do not see Him, then He certainly sees you.” This part shows worship done whilst fleeing and fearing, and is therefore the second level of ihsaan. So if you do not worship Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, as if you are seeing Him and seeking Him and your soul is encouraging you towards Him, then worship Him keeping in mind that He sees you. So you will then worship Him as one who fears Him and seeks to flee from His retribution and punishment.

This level is held by those having knowledge of these affairs to be lower than the first level. Worship of Allaah, the Perfect and Most High, is, as Ibn al-Qayyim, rahimahullaah, said: ‘Worship of the Most Merciful is utmost love of Him, along with the worshippers submission and humility, they are its two pillars.’ So worship is built upon these two matters: utmost love, and utmost humility and submission. Love causes one to desire and seek, and humility causes one to fear and flee. This is ihsaan in the worship of Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic. If a person worships Allaah in this manner, then he will become one who is pure and sincere in his worship of Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic. He will not desire with his worship that he is seen by the people, or heard of, nor will he desire their praise. It will be the same to him whether the people notice him or do not notice him.

He will worship with ihsaan in every condition. Indeed part of the completion of purity and sincerity of worship (al-ikhlaas) is that a person should seek not to be seen by the people when he worships, and that his worship should be a secret between him and his Lord. That is unless there is some benefit for the Muslims or for Islaam in his performing it openly, for example if he is a person who is followed and taken as an example and he wishes to manifest his worship to the people so that they should take it as an example to follow; or that he manifests his worship so that his companions, friends and associates should follow his example, then this is good. This benefit which he takes account of may be more excellent and greater than the benefit of keeping it hidden. Therefore, Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, has praised those who spend of their wealth in charity secretly and openly. So whenever performing it secretly is better and more beneficial for the heart, and causes one to be more humble and submissive, and to turn to Allaah more attentively, then they give in secret. But when performing it openly produces benefit for Islaam, due to manifestation of its prescribed practices, and will mean that the people follow this persons example, then they do this openly. The Believer looks to what is most appropriate. So whatever is most appropriate and most beneficial in worship, then it will be what is most complete and most excellent.