Blindness of the Heart and the Extinguishment of its Light
as-salaamu ‘alaykum wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuh..
From among the punishment of sins is that they blind the insight and discernment of the heart. Sins extinguish the light of the heart and obstruct the pathway to knowledge. They keep the basic ingredients of guidance hidden from the individual. When Imaam Maalik met ash-Shafi’ee, he noticed that he possessed certain characteristics. He (Maalik) said, “I see that Allaah the Most High, has cast a light upon you, and you do not extinguish it with the darkness of disobedience.”
This light (within the sinner) continues to weaken and fade away as the darkness of disobedience grows stronger until the heart becomes jet-black. How many destructive situations do such people fall into without knowing what has happened? He is like the blind that ventures into the night, along a path filled with danger and peril. Oh, what a great pity! Oh, how quick the ruin!
As these layers of darkness (resulting from sin) grow stronger, their effects pour out from the heart onto the limbs. Then the face is covered with a blackness (whose density) is according to the frequency and increase of the sins. Eventually, at the time of his death, the darkness appears in the grave.
The Prophet (salallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallaam) said,
“إن هده القبور ممتلة على أهلها ظلمة، وإن الله ينورها يصلاتي عليهم”
“Indeed these graves spread a darkness over their people. Allaah provides light for the graves with my prayers for the people.”
Saheeh Muslim (no. 956)
Finally, on the Day that the servants are gathered, the faces of the sinners are held high and made visible as the assembled onlookers watch these faces become black as coal. Oh, what a punishment! A punishment to which there is nothing in the entire world that is comparable to it. How much less is the portion of the unfortunate servant who labors endlessly, during a duration that is only a moment in a dream?
- Transcribed from: Sins and their Punishments || Ibn ul-Qayyim (rahimahullaah)