Always act with a purpose

Love For The Sake Of Allah

Love is among the most exalted of human feelings. When this love revolves around Almighty Allah and forms the basis for our interpersonal relationships, many problems can be weathered and great fruits can be harvested for both the individual and society as a whole. The Quran and Sunnah often speak about the noble status of those whom Allah graces to possess such love. Loving someone for the sake of Allah comes in two ways: in your heart and with your deeds. Allah says:

وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَتَّخِذُ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ أَندَادًا يُحِبُّونَهُمْ كَحُبِّ اللَّهِ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَشَدُّ حُبًّا لِّلَّهِ وَلَوْ يَرَى الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا إِذْ يَرَوْنَ الْعَذَابَ أَنَّ الْقُوَّةَ لِلَّهِ جَمِيعًا وَأَنَّ اللَّهَ شَدِيدُ الْعَذَابِ

“And among the mankind who takes from besides Allah equals. They love them as (they should) love Allah. And those who believe[d] (are) stronger (in) love for Allah. And if would see those who wronged, when they will see the punishment that the power (belongs) to Allah all and [that] Allah (is) severe (in) [the] punishment.” (Surah Al-Baqarah 2:165)

Love for the sake of Allah brings rewards your mind can’t even grasp, but unfortunately, it has become a lost trait among many Muslims loving one another for the sake of Allah, and brotherhood in faith, are among the most excellent acts of worship. Allah says:

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ سَيَجْعَلُ لَهُمُ الرَّحْمَٰنُ وُدًّا

“Indeed, those who believed and did good deeds will bestow for them the Most Gracious affection.” (Surah Maryam 19:96)

The sublime love entails some conditions and duties that must be fulfilled so that the relationship remains pure and free of base undercurrents. Upholding these duties brings a servant nearer to Allah and to His pleasure and, over time, it can bring about a greater nobility of person. Allah says:

وَمِنْ آيَاتِهِ أَنْ خَلَقَ لَكُم مِّنْ أَنفُسِكُمْ أَزْوَاجًا لِّتَسْكُنُوا إِلَيْهَا وَجَعَلَ بَيْنَكُم مَّوَدَّةً وَرَحْمَةً إِنَّ فِي ذَٰلِكَ لَآيَاتٍ لِّقَوْمٍ يَتَفَكَّرُونَ

“And among His Signs (is) that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquillity in them; and He placed between you love and mercy. Indeed, in that surely (are) Signs for a people who reflect.” (Surah Ar-Rum 30:21)

Loving for the sake of Allah means to love for someone what Allah loves, and hate for them all that Allah hates. We need to understand the need to fulfil “love for me”. Loving ourselves first might seem a little egotistical, but if the intention is to please Allah,subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) to serve people and diffuse goodness merely for Him, then it won’t be egoistic at all. That’s how true love works; a few restrictions, precautions and improvements are necessary and then, ultimately we rejoice at its success.

How to love yourself consistently each day, here are some powerful reminders that can quickly improve your quality of life:

  1. Keep the soul alive by learning more and more
  2. Reflect on the effects of practising self-love
  3. Overcome negative beliefs about yourself
  4. A healthy mind dwells in a healthy body
  5. The Prophets and martyrs will envy you
  6. Practising loving-kindness meditation
  7. Do things that make you feel good
  8. Repeat positive affirmations daily
  9. Celebrate and reward yourself
  10. Be a person others can rely on
  11. Let them know you love them
  12. Taste the sweetness of faith
  13. Rewrite your internal script
  14. List your positive attributes
  15. Make excuses for people
  16. Enjoy the shade of Allah
  17. Never call yourself names
  18. Discard your negative filter
  19. Improving your inner voice
  20. Give yourself the gift of time
  21. Identify negative responses
  22. Promote the greeting of peace
  23. Pray for others in their absence
  24. Develop a plan for dealing with setbacks 
  25. Tell others you love them for Allah’s sake
  26. Do not assume that the worst can happen
  27. Support yourself with positive affirmations
  28. Think about someone you feel positively towards
  29. Be patient with others and strive for a clean heart
  30. Be a person on whom others can rely in times of need

Why should we love ourselves for the sake of Allah?

To love others, we must first love ourselves; and the more we love others for the sake of Allah, our love for ourselves for the sake of Allah also increases. Thus, it’s important to know if we love ourselves enough or not. Loving yourself is not about being selfish or arrogant.

الْأَخِلَّاءُ يَوْمَئِذٍ بَعْضُهُمْ لِبَعْضٍ عَدُوٌّ إِلَّا الْمُتَّقِينَ

“Friends that Day, some of them to others (will be) enemies except the righteous.” (Surah Az-Zukhruf 43:67)

Loving and accepting yourself will ensure that you are a happy and healthy person. It means that you are content with what Allah has given you, and you embrace your flaws and work to better them. Many people have trouble letting go of negative thoughts that they have about themselves. These negative thoughts often come from outside people whose opinions we value and from whom we seek to love and accept. Allah says:

وَنَزَعْنَا مَا فِي صُدُورِهِم مِّنْ غِلٍّ إِخْوَانًا عَلَىٰ سُرُرٍ مُّتَقَابِلِينَ

“And We (will) remove what (is) in their breasts of rancour (they will be) brothers on thrones facing each other.” (Surah Al-Hijr 15:47)

Loving yourself means that you can be grateful for your blessings, and wish the same for your fellow brothers and sisters. You understand that you are valuable to the ummah and that your actions can bring benefit to society. Feelings of bitterness and jealousy can never enter your heart, so you can love others easily and sincerely.

وَمِنَ النَّاسِ وَالدَّوَابِّ وَالْأَنْعَامِ مُخْتَلِفٌ أَلْوَانُهُ كَذَٰلِكَ إِنَّمَا يَخْشَى اللَّهَ مِنْ عِبَادِهِ الْعُلَمَاءُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَزِيزٌ غَفُورٌ

“And among men and moving creatures and the cattle (are) various [their] colours likewise. Only fear Allah among His slaves those who know. Indeed, Allah (is) All-Mighty, Oft-Forgiving.” (Surah Fatir 35:28)

To start with, there is an invaluable reward, as Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) says He loves those who love others for His sake, and if Allah subḥānahu wa ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He), Al Wadud (The Loving) starts loving a person, imagine the prolific rewards and eternal contentment which will be honoured to him, not only in the Dunya but also in the hereafter. Allah says:

وَأَلَّفَ بَيْنَ قُلُوبِهِمْ لَوْ أَنفَقْتَ مَا فِي الْأَرْضِ جَمِيعًا مَّا أَلَّفْتَ بَيْنَ قُلُوبِهِمْ وَلَٰكِنَّ اللَّهَ أَلَّفَ بَيْنَهُمْ إِنَّهُ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ

“And He (has) put affection between their hearts. If you (had) spent whatever (is) in the earth all you could not (have) put effect between their hearts, but Allah (has) put affection between them. Indeed, He (is) All-Mighty, All-Wise.” (Surah Al-Anfal 8:63)

Love for the sake of Allah is without a doubt the strongest type of love. This is because love itself can only exist, as long as the reason to love exists. Exercise by repeating good acts and, most importantly, make the correct intention, this will not only help you love others for His sake but also give you a very optimistic and nonjudgmental vision about this trivial life.