7 Evils Muslims Should Strive To Avoid

You don’t have to look far to find corruption; it’s everywhere. It’s far too easy to get caught up in drugs, riba, zina, and other major sins. Here are 7 evils that a Muslim should avoid at all costs.

1. Shirk

It might seem like Muslims are far removed from Shirk, but that’s not entirely true. While most Muslims have nothing to do with the major Shirk like prostrating to or making Dua to other than Allah, there are other forms of Shirk that are done on a routinely basis that the Muslim should be aware of.

The Messenger of Allaah () said: “The thing that I fear most for you is minor shirk.” They said: “O Messenger of Allaah, what is minor shirk?” He said: “Showing off, for Allaah will say on the Day when people are recompensed for their actions: ‘Go to those for whom you were showing off with your deeds in the world, and see what reward you find with them.’” (Al-Musnad 27742)

{The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: O people, beware of this shirk (form of polytheism), for it is more subtle than the footsteps of an ant. The one whom Allaah willed should speak said to him, How can we beware of it when it is more subtle than the footsteps of an ant, O Messenger of Allaah? He said, Say, Allaahumma innaa naoodhu bika min an nushrika bika shayan nalamuhu wa nastaghfiruka limaa laa nalam (O Allaah, we seek refuge with You from knowingly associating anything with You, and we seek Your forgiveness for that which we do unknowingly).} (Ahmed 4/403)

The Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) said: “When Allah gathers the people on the Day of Judgement – a Day in which there is no doubt in – a caller will call out: ‘Whoever committed Shirk in any of his deeds he did for Allah – then let him seek his reward from other than Allah. For indeed Allah is the most free of the partners from any need of Shirk.” (Nasaa’i Book 46 Hadith 3154)

One must consistently check their intentions before, while, and after doing a good deed to make sure that it’s being done sincerely for the pleasure of Allah.

Wearing amulets and talismans are also Shirk and one should be careful not to wear them or advise anyone who does wear them.

“Whoever wears an amulet has committed shirk.” (Classed Saheeh Al Jaami’)

Shirk is one of the 10 nullifiers of Islam as unanimously agreed by the scholars of Islam.

2. Kufr

Some of the things we do could lead to Kufr or disbelief; namely, abandoning Salah.

“The Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) said: ‘The covenant that stands between us and them is the Salah; whoever abandons it, he has committed disbelief.'” (Nasaa’i Book 5 Hadith 464)

One of the ways to avoid Kufr as much as possible is to rush to do good deeds.

It is narrated on the authority of Abu Huraira that the Messenger of Allah () observed: Be prompt in doing good deeds (before you are overtaken) by turbulence which would be like a part of the dark night. During (that stormy period) a man would be a Muslim in the morning and an unbeliever in the evening or he would be a believer in the evening and an unbeliever in the morning, and would sell his faith for worldly goods.

This Hadith goes hand in hand with the advice of the Prophet to take advantage of your free time before you are preoccupied. Shaykh Salih Al-Fawzan beautifully explains this Hadith:

One of the things that can lead to Kufr that is unfortunately prevalent in our day and age is making jokes about Allah, His messengers, His laws, or the believers.

During the battle of Tabuk, there were some men who were making fun of the companions. One of them said, “I Have never seen like these reciters of ours! They have the hungriest stomachs, the most lying tongues, and are the most cowardice in battle.” One of the men in the Masjid who heard this said, “You lie, you are a hypocrite and I will surely inform the Messenger of Allah .” When the statement was conveyed to the Prophet , Allah revealed the Ayat:

And if you ask them, they will surely say, “We were only conversing and playing.” Say, “Is it Allah and His verses and His Messenger that you were mocking?” Make no excuse; you have disbelieved after your belief. If We pardon one faction of you – We will punish another faction because they were criminals. Qur’an (9: 65-66)

3.Bid’ah

Bid’ah is a vast topic that I’m not qualified to talk about, but I’ll mention the basics. Bid’ah means innovation; Bid’ah in the religion of Islam means newly innovated matters such as beliefs and acts of worship that the Prophet and his rightly guided successors did not do.

“I urge you to adhere to my way (Sunnah) and the way of the rightly-guided successors (al-khulafa’ al-raashidoon) who come after me. Hold fast to it and bite onto it with your eyeteeth [i.e., cling firmly to it], and beware of newly-invented matters.”

Bid’ah is explained very well in this lecture by Abu Usamah At-Thahabi.

Verily he among you who lives long will see great controversy, so you must keep to my Sunnah and to the Sunnah of the Khulafa ar-Rashideen (the rightly guided caliphs), those who guide to the right way. Cling to it stubbornly [literally: with your molar teeth]. Beware of newly invented matters [in the religion], for verily every bidah (innovation) is misguidance.” (Tirmidhi)

Common forms of Bid’ah include:

  • Celebrating the Mawlid(birthday) of the Prophet
  • Believing the Qur’an is created
  • Using pebbles or Tasbih beads for Dhikr
  • Believing Allah is everywhere

Avoiding Bid’ah is one of the many reasons learning about Islam is important.

4. Kibr

Kibr, or arrogance, is one of the qualities that lead to Jahannam. It’s the quality that caused Iblees to disobey Allah and despise Adam and his children. It’s what led to the destruction of Fir’awn,  Qaarun, Abu Jahl, and many others.

The Prophet (Peace be upon him) said, “He who has, in his heart, an ant’s weight of arrogance will not enter Jannah.” Someone said: “A man likes to wear beautiful clothes and shoes?” Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) said, “Allah is Beautiful, He loves beauty. Arrogance means ridiculing and rejecting the Truth and despising people.” (Muslim)

5. Nifaaq

Nifaaq (Hypocrisy) and the qualities of the who have Nifaaq are mentioned in the Qur’an a number of times. The hypocrites are those who say they believe when they really don’t.

And of the people are some who say, “We believe in Allah and the Last Day,” but they are not believers. They [think to] deceive Allah and those who believe, but they deceive not except themselves and perceive [it] not.In their hearts is disease, so Allah has increased their disease; and for them is a painful punishment because they [habitually] used to lie. Qur’an (2: 8-10)

Indeed, the hypocrites [think to] deceive Allah, but He is deceiving them. And when they stand for prayer, they stand lazily, showing [themselves to] the people and not remembering Allah except a little Qur’an (4: 142)

Allah tells us the state of the hypocrites on the Day of Judgement.

On the [same] Day the hypocrite men and hypocrite women will say to those who believed, “Wait for us that we may acquire some of your light.” It will be said, “Go back behind you and seek light.” And a wall will be placed between them with a door, its interior containing mercy, but on the outside of it is torment.The hypocrites will call to the believers, “Were we not with you?” They will say, “Yes, but you afflicted yourselves and awaited [misfortune for us] and doubted, and wishful thinking deluded you until there came the command of Allah. And the Deceiver deceived you concerning Allah.So today no ransom will be taken from you or from those who disbelieved. Your refuge is the Fire. It is most worthy of you, and wretched is the destination. Qur’an (57: 13-15)

Indeed, the hypocrites will be in the lowest depths of the Fire – and never will you find for them a helper – Except for those who repent, correct themselves, hold fast to Allah, and are sincere in their religion for Allah, for those will be with the believers. And Allah is going to give the believers a great reward. Qur’an (4: 145-146)

6. Kasal

There are only two places in the Qur’an that use the word Kusala (laziness); both are used in relation to the hypocrites. The Prophet would ask Allah to protect him from laziness, every morning and evening. 

Allah’s Apostle used to invoke thus: “O Allah! I seek refuge with You from miserliness, laziness; from old geriatric age the punishment in the grave; from the affliction of Ad-Dajjal; and from the afflictions of life and death.

7. Bukhl (Stinginess)

In the Qur’an, we are told not to be too stingy or too extravagant with our money, but to follow the middle path.

And [they are] those who, when they spend, do so not excessively or sparingly but are ever, between that, [justly] moderate. Qur’an (25: 67)

The believers are warned against being stingy and not spending in the path of Allah.

Ah! There you are, being invited to spend in the way of Allah; yet among you there are those who are stingy; and whoever is stingy is stingy only to himself. Allah is the All-sufficient, and you are all-needy, and if you turn away He will replace you with another people, and they will not be like you. Qur’an (47: 38)

And spend [in the way of Allah] from what We have provided you before death approaches one of you and he says, “My Lord, if only You would delay me for a brief term so I would give charity and be among the righteous.”But never will Allah delay a soul when its time has come. And Allah is Acquainted with what you do. Qur’an (63: 10-11)

Infact, the Prophet () tells us many benefits of giving Sadaqah.

“The believer’s shade on the Day of Resurrection will be his charity.”(Tirmidhi)

“Give charity without delay, for it stands in the way of calamity.” (Tirmidhi)

“The example of those who spend their wealth in the way of Allah is like a seed [of grain] which grows seven spikes; in each spike is a hundred grains. And Allah multiplies [His reward] for whom He wills. And Allah is all-Encompassing and Knowing.” [Quran, 2: 261]

May Allah protect us from these evils and any evil that will lead to Jahannam. Feel free to leave a comment if you think I’ve left anything out.

2 comments

  1. Mind me asking how believing that الله تعالى is Everywhere is considered Bid’ah according to your post?. . Because it is essentially 1 of our beliefs as a Muslim that he is The All Hearing & The All Seeing isn’t? So ultimately, He is Everywhere.

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    1. Assalamu Alaykum,

      Sorry for responding so late. For some reason I found your comment in the trash/spam section.
      Believing Allah is the All-Hearing and All-Seeing is not the same as believing Allah is everywhere. There is no doubt that Allah hears and sees everything, but to say that he is everywhere is a mistake. It is part of the correct Aqeedah of the Muslim to believe that Allah is above the Arsh (throne), as he says in Surah Taha: {The Most Merciful [who is] above the Throne established.} (Qur’an 20:5)
      https://quran.com/20/5?translations=20

      https://islamqa.info/en/answers/992/evidence-that-allah-is-exalted-high-above-his-creation-and-above-the-heavens

      This hadith also does a good job of explaining where Allah is:

      Mu’awiyah as-Sahmi reported: “I had some sheep which I kept between Uhud and Juwaniyyah with a slave-girl to look after them. One day, I went out to check on my sheep and discovered that a wolf had devoured one of them. Since I am just a human, (I became angry) and struck the girl. Later on, I came to the Prophet (sallallaahu `alaihi wasallam) and reported to him the incident. He terrified me with the gravity of my action. I said, ‘Messenger of Allah’! Shall I free her (as an expiation of my sin.) He said ‘Call her over’. When I did, he asked her, ‘Where is Allah?’ She said, ‘Above the heavens’. Then he asked her, ‘Who am I?’ She said, ‘The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu `alaihi wasallam) ‘. Thereupon, the Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu `alaihi wasallam) ordered me, ‘Free her. She is a believer’.”[34]

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