Allah SWT has mentioned the word ‘hypocrite’ or its meaning 73 times in the Glorious Quran. As Muslims, we need to be conscious of this and the damage that it can cause.
In the current time we are living in, there seems to be major issues within our community regarding hypocrisy that we need to tackle, especially with the social media and those who talk about Islam but they are away from Islam.
We need to reflect on the guidance given by Allah SWT and his Messenger SAWS so that we can reflect on signs of being a hypocrite and protect ourselves from falling into this trap.
There are two main types of hypocrisy, the first type is being hypocrite in belief. This type is the type where the hypocrite is actually aware that they are one but are being so deliberately.
The primary example of this is where the individual is not a Muslim in the first place as he/she do not believe in Islam, but pretends that they are believers, usually for personal benefit.
Hypocrites of this type have been around since the time of the Prophet SAWS and so we should be wary of such people.
In the time and place we live in, our youth especially should be warned of such people because on social media, for example, there can exist people who are called Influencers. These are people who are like role models with people following what they say and do in the millions and beyond.
We need to be careful that even those who claim to be Muslim and are Influencers on social media are adhering to the correct teachings of Islam. This is because there are cases where such so-called Muslim Influencers have deviated from the teaching of the Quran and Sunnah and so their millions of followers, often young people, are also influenced in doing the same.
We need to be mindful of such people and so we ought to back up what we see and hear from anyone and especially we should make and effort to enquire as to the types of people our children are connected to and are following on Social Media.
Remember, these influencers may not necessarily openly change their stance on Islam and show their hypocrisy fully. They could subtlely change their belief and say they now disbelieve in an essential part and pillars of Islam, such as belief in the angels or the Prophets or some part of the Quran.
This is a hazardous trap and so we should arm ourselves with the knowledge of what we and our children are being influenced by online as it is a potential trap of shaitaan that is operating under our noses without us being aware.
The second common type is the practical type of hypocrisy, this is a person who doesn’t follow certain aspects of Islam. However, unlike the first, he or she is not actively disobeying Allah SWT due to disbelief but is doing so due to laziness or some other damaging but not malicious reason.
As Muslims, we should take notice of this type of hypocrisy because we could be guilty of it without realising so.
Luckily for us, we have had the best of all teachers SAWS educate us on what constitutes hypocrisy in this type and the imam mentioned a hadith in relation to this which is translated to say:
Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “There are three signs of a hypocrite: When he speaks, he lies; when he makes a promise, he breaks it; and when he is trusted, he betrays his trust.”
Dear brothers and sisters, this gives us three points to ensure that we are not regarded as hypocrites in the sight of Allah SWT. However, there are more examples from the Quran and Sunnah to help define a hypocrite and thus avoid. This reminder concludes with listing these additional 7 short examples.
- Becoming vile when arguing
- Laziness, speediness and showing off in worship. This point is particularly important and the imam mentioned Sura An-Nisa, ayat 142 to cement the point. It’s translated to say:
Behold, the hypocrites seek to deceive Allah, but it is they who are being deluded by Him. When they rise to Prayer, they rise reluctantly, and only to be seen by men. They remember Allah but little.
- Talk about those who give in charity in a bad way
- Make fun out of other Muslims
- Swear by God falsely. This one is worth explaining. For some, Wallahi is the beginning of every story they tell. However, if we truly knew what a lofty oath this is, we would be absolutely sure that the words that follow our oaths are 100% true.
- General Laziness.
- Have issues with destiny aka the will of Allah SWT
Dear brothers and sisters, hypocrisy is a damaging trait that effects our faith and our community. It is something that damages our lives and our souls. We need to ensure that we remain conscious of the signs of hypocrisy so that we can avoid falling into the trap of it.