Taqwa – Fearing Allah and to avoid sinning

Taqwa is an arabic word that literally means to “to protect oneself” or “be wary”of something or someone. Taqwah is avoid the sins and establish one’s self in such a way that they fear Allah and so, submit their will to Allah.
“O you who believe! fear Allah as He should be feared and die not except in a state of Islam.” [Surat 'Āli `Imrān  3:102]
Taqwa has alot of importance in Islam that is why it is mentioned in numerous places in the Holy Quran and hadith.
Taqwa is  to follow the path of righteousness. Allah says in the Quran:
“Verily, the most honorable of you with Allah is that (believer) who has At-Taqwa” [al-Hujrat 49:13].”
Taqwa has it’s significance because no good can be done without either the love of Allah or the fear of Allah. Taqwa is like the feeling where you fear the angerness of the one you love. The fear of being accountable for every unjust activity and sin.
“And be afraid of the Day when you shall be brought back to Allah. Then every person shall be paid what he earned, and they shall not be dealt with unjustly (Surah Al-Baqara: 281).”
Taqwa is the only thing that exalts one believer from another, nothing else. Not race, color, wealth or family tree only taqwa is the criteria for greatness is Taqwa.
Allah says:
“O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honorable of you with Allah is that (believer) who has Taqwa (God-consciousness, fearing Allah). Verily, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware.” [Soorah al-Hujurat (49): 13]
Taqwa is derived from the word ‘waqiya’, which actually means “to protect”. It is protection from the Anger of Allah and His punishment. Taqwa is the performance  of such actions which are going to please Allah and abstaining from all those actions that causes His wrath.
“Verily Allah accepts only from those who are the muttaqoon (those who posses Taqwa).” [Soorah al-Maaidah (19): 71-72]“
Taqwa in Ahadith
The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said, “The most common thing which leads people to Paradise is taqwa of Allah and good conduct, and the most common thing which leads people to the Hell Fire is the mouth and the private parts.” [Tirmidhi]
Tafseer ibn Kathir mentions that Atiyah As-Sa’di said the Propeht (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said, “The servant will not acquire the status of those with taqwa until he abandons what is harmless out of fear of falling into that which is harmful.” [Ibn Majah, Tirmizi]
Sayyiduna Ali (R.A) defined Taqwa as being the ‘fear of Jaleel (Allah), acting upon the tanzeel (Quran), being content with qaleel (little), and preparing for the day of raheel (journeying from this world).
Hadrat Umar ibn Khattab (R.A) once asked Hadrat Ibn Ka’ab (R.A) the definition of taqwa. In reply Hadrat Ibn Ka’ab asked, “Have you ever had to traverse a thorny path?” Hadrat Umar replied in the affirmative and Hadrat Ka’ab continued, “How do you do so?”
Hadrat Umar said that he would carefully walk through after first having collected all loose and flowing clothing in his hands so nothing gets caught in the thorns hence injuring him. Hadrat Ka’ab said, “This is the definition of taqwa, to protect oneself from sin through life’s dangerous journey so that one can successfully complete the journey unscathed by sin.”
Hadrat Hasan Basri said, “Taqwa is the basis of Deen. Desire and greed destroy this basis.”
Hadrat Maulana Hafiz Ghulam Habib (r.a.) used to define taqwa as the shunning of everything and anything that causes a deficiency in one’s relationship with Allah.

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