Wara’ – Abstaining

Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem, Alhamdulillahi wa solatu wasalaamu ‘ala Rasulillahi wa aalihi wa sohbihi ajmain…


On the authority of Abu Dharr, Rasulullah s.a.w. said, “Part of the goodness of a man’s practice of Islam is that he abandon whatever does not concern him.”

A shaykh we know, may Allah be pleased with him said, “Wara’ is seclusion.” It is mentioned in the Risala of Qushayri that, withdrawal from those of his own kind is indispensable for the seeker in the beginning of his state, and then seclusion in the end (the desire of which comes naturally), because of his attainment of intimacy with Allah. This is because they have tasted the sweetness of being alone with the One. Wara’  according to Imam al-Haddad is the avoidance of not only everything that is haram but also everything that is syubhah. The Imam endeavored to be well-informed about everything that either came into his possesion or proceeded from it. This, he did without exaggeration and without obsessively prying into the affairs of others, keeping the golden mean.

Some musk from the spoils of war was brought to ‘Umar b. Abd al-‘Aziz, who held it to his nose and remarked, “The only benefit to this is its scent, and I hate to think that I alone sholud smell it without all the Muslims sharing it.”


O young man, do not occupy yourself with that which is irrelevant to you so you miss that which is concerns you! Thinking of the states of another person and his faults are things that are of no concern to you, while reflecting on your states is your concern. Do not spend time in the company of neighbours, friends and acquiantances without good reason, for that is an illusion. Most of the lying takes place between two, and disobedience doet not happen but between two. None of you should go out of his home except to pursue essential personal nad family interests.

Make every effort not to be the first to speak and that your speech is only in answer to a question. When a person asks you about something, answer him only when there are benefits for both of you in responding to him, otherwise do nt answer him. When you see a muslim brother, do not ask him, “Where are you going to?” or “Where are you coming from?”. He may be unwilling to answer you about his personal affairs so he would lie and in result it would be you who pushed him into lying.

2. – Excerpt from Jila’ al-khatir discourses of Shaykh ‘Abd al-Qadir al-Jilani 

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