The following are excerpts from a particularly poignant post on SunniForum.com:
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: “You people should continue to enjoin people towards the doing of righteous deeds and you should continue to prohibit them from evil; otherwise Allah will put into authority over you the worst of people to rule over you. At such time the best from among you will pray to Allah (for deliverance) and your prayers will go unanswered.’."
Everything in our power must be done to enjoin the good and forbid the evil, but in doing so extreme precaution must be taken to ensure it is only through completely Halaal means. Halaal and Haraam are clear as daylight. But we keep resorting to matters that may fall in between Halaal and Haraam, convinced that, our lack of reliance on what is undoubtedly Halaal, will not affect Allah‘s barakah on us.
Thus they dived deeper and deeper into doubtful actions, until what is blatantly Haraam, still retained the shape of Halaal in their eyes.
The slightest of transgression and negligence by one person can and does affect the whole Ummah:
When Allah provided help to the army of Sa’d Ibn Abi Waqqas, by enabling his army to cross on top of the river, Sa’d Ibn Abi Waqqas was repeatedly reciting, “ As long as there is not a single unjust person in my army, Allah will help us”.
Umar (ra) once reprimanded a man severely for selling items in the market without knowing all fiqh rulings of trading. He genuinely feared that due to one man’s negligence of the Shariah, Allah will withhold His rain from the whole Ummah.
Khalid Bin Walid, due to an undesirable word he uttered inadvertently, found a subsequent battle many times more arduous than his previous battles, despite having better numbers and weaponry.
Abu Darda (Radiallahu anhu) reports that Rasulullah
(Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: “Allah says: I am Allah besides whom there is no Diety, the Master of Kings, King of Kings. Verily the hearts of kings are under the control of My Hands. When My servants obey me, I turn the hearts of kings and rulers towards them so that they rule over them with mercy and kindness and when My servants disobey Me, I turn the hearts of kings and rulers to treat them harshly, with anger and vengeance. Thereby they mete out torture and oppression. Hence do not occupy yourselves with praying for curses upon kings and instead turn to Me in remembrance and with humility. And I will preserve you against the tyranny of the kings.”
When Hadhrat Umar (ra) approached Jerusalem after its conquest, and observed some of the Sahabah wearing extravagant clothes, he became furious and started pelting stones at them, uttering words that, as was to become a habit of his, turned out to be truly prophetic:
“We were amongst the most abased of man, and Allaah had
granted us honour with Islaam, hence if we ever seek
honour in anything besides what Allaah had honoured us
with, Allaah (will once again) debase us.”
Externally we have lost our identity, having barely any physical resemblence to the Salaf, and internally only Allah knows how much more distant we are from the Sunnah. Worse still, the virtual absence of the Sunnah of the Prophet (saw) does not seem to cause any discomfort to the majority of us, with some even venturing as far as defending this indifference. Those of us who attempt to adopt the attitude of the Sahabah towards the Sunnah, are regarded as fundamentalist, rigid bearded fanatics, by such people.
The Sahabah were fervently passionate about every single practice of the Prophet (saw). The weight of no acts of Sunnah was lightened due to the existence of some other supposedly bigger fitnah - one of the reasons parroted nowadays as an excuse to neglect certain Sunnah. Any act that had the slightest possibility of being Sunnah would be grasped onto so firmly and rigidly, such that the level of our attachment to the major Fard acts today, pale in comparison.
One wonders what Hadhrat Umar would pelt at us if were here to view our extravagance and our negligence of the Sunnah of Prophet (saw).
“Even if your tongues become dry from all the prayers you say (while calling on Me) and even though you lift up your hands in prayer till they reach the very heavens, I shall not show any Mercy to any of you who cry and wail so bitterly until you people discard all your unjust dealings and unfair treatment among yourselves.”