Al-Nawawi on reliance, conviction, and trust in Allah

In the name of Allah, the Gracious, the Merciful

Al-Nawawi recorded in his book Riyad al-Salihin:

باب في اليقين والتوكل

Chapter on conviction and trust in Allah.

Source: Riyāḍ al-Ṣāliḥīn 1/43

Allah Almighty said:

وَلَمَّا رَأَى الْمُؤْمِنُونَ الْأَحْزَابَ قَالُوا هَٰذَا مَا وَعَدَنَا اللَّهُ وَرَسُولُهُ وَصَدَقَ اللَّهُ وَرَسُولُهُ ۚ وَمَا زَادَهُمْ إِلَّا إِيمَانًا وَتَسْلِيمًا

When the believers saw the companies, they said: This is what Allah and his messenger had promised us, and Allah and his messenger spoke the truth. It only increased their faith and submission.

Surat al-Ahzab 33:22

And Allah said:

الَّذِينَ قَالَ لَهُمُ النَّاسُ إِنَّ النَّاسَ قَدْ جَمَعُوا لَكُمْ فَاخْشَوْهُمْ فَزَادَهُمْ إِيمَانًا وَقَالُوا حَسْبُنَا اللَّهُ وَنِعْمَ الْوَكِيلُ

Those to whom the people said: Indeed, the people have gathered against you, so fear them! But it only increased their faith, and they said: Sufficient for us is Allah, and he is an excellent guardian.

Surat Ali Imran 3:173

And Allah said:

وَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى الْحَيِّ الَّذِي لَا يَمُوتُ وَسَبِّحْ بِحَمْدِهِ

Rely upon the Living, who does not die, and exalt his praise.

Surat al-Furqan 25:58

And Allah said:

وَعَلَى اللَّهِ فَلْيَتَوَكَّلِ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ

And upon Allah let the believers rely.

Surat Ibrahim 14:11

And Allah said:

فَإِذَا عَزَمْتَ فَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى اللَّهِ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُتَوَكِّلِينَ

When you have made the decision, rely upon Allah. Verily, Allah loves those who trust him.

Surat Ali Imran 3:159

And Allah said:

وَمَن يَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى اللَّهِ فَهُوَ حَسْبُهُ ۚ

Whoever relied upon Allah, he will suffice him.

Surat al-Talaq 65:3

And Allah said:

إِنَّمَا الْمُؤْمِنُونَ الَّذِينَ إِذَا ذُكِرَ اللَّهُ وَجِلَتْ قُلُوبُهُمْ وَإِذَا تُلِيَتْ عَلَيْهِمْ آيَاتُهُ زَادَتْهُمْ إِيمَانًا وَعَلَىٰ رَبِّهِمْ يَتَوَكَّلُونَ

The believers are only those who, when Allah is mentioned, their hearts become fearful. When his verses are recited to them, it increases their faith, and they rely upon their Lord.

Surat al-Anfal 8:2

Ibn Abbas reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

عُرِضَتْ عَلَيَّ الْأُمَمُ فَجَعَلَ النَّبِيُّ وَالنَّبِيَّانِ يَمُرُّونَ مَعَهُمْ الرَّهْطُ وَالنَّبِيُّ لَيْسَ مَعَهُ أَحَدٌ حَتَّى رُفِعَ لِي سَوَادٌ عَظِيمٌ قُلْتُ مَا هَذَا أُمَّتِي هَذِهِ قِيلَ بَلْ هَذَا مُوسَى وَقَوْمُهُ قِيلَ انْظُرْ إِلَى الْأُفُقِ فَإِذَا سَوَادٌ يَمْلَأُ الْأُفُقَ ثُمَّ قِيلَ لِي انْظُرْ هَا هُنَا وَهَا هُنَا فِي آفَاقِ السَّمَاءِ فَإِذَا سَوَادٌ قَدْ مَلَأَ الْأُفُقَ قِيلَ هَذِهِ أُمَّتُكَ وَيَدْخُلُ الْجَنَّةَ مِنْ هَؤُلَاءِ سَبْعُونَ أَلْفًا بِغَيْرِ حِسَابٍ

I was shown the nations before me and one or two prophets would pass by with only a few followers and another would pass by with none. Then a large crowd of people passed in front of me and I asked: Are they my followers? It was said: No, this is Moses and his followers. Then it was said: Look at the horizon. Behold, there was a multitude of people filling the horizon. It was said: This is your nation from which seventy thousand will enter Paradise without being taken to account.

Then, the Prophet entered his house without telling them who the seventy thousand were, so the people started discussing the issue and they said, “It is we who have believed in Allah and followed his messenger, so those people are either ourselves or our children who are born in the era of Islam, for we were born in the time of ignorance.” When the Prophet heard that, he came out and he said:

هُمْ الَّذِينَ لَا يَسْتَرْقُونَ وَلَا يَتَطَيَّرُونَ وَلَا يَكْتَوُونَ وَعَلَى رَبِّهِمْ يَتَوَكَّلُونَ

They are those who do not treat themselves with incantations, nor do they believe in bad or good omens, nor do they get themselves cauterized. Rather, they put their trust in their Lord.

‘Ukkashah ibn Muhsin said, “O Messenger of Allah, am I one of them?” The Prophet said yes. Another man got up and he said, “Am I one of them?” The Prophet said:

سَبَقَكَ بِهَا عُكَّاشَةُ

‘Ukkashah has preceded you.

Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 5378, Grade: Muttafaqun Alayhi

Ibn Abbas reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, used to say:

اللَّهُمَّ لَكَ أَسْلَمْتُ وَبِكَ آمَنْتُ وَعَلَيْكَ تَوَكَّلْتُ وَإِلَيْكَ أَنَبْتُ وَبِكَ خَاصَمْتُ اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّي أَعُوذُ بِعِزَّتِكَ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا أَنْتَ أَنْ تُضِلَّنِي أَنْتَ الْحَيُّ الَّذِي لَا يَمُوتُ وَالْجِنُّ وَالْإِنْسُ يَمُوتُونَ

O Allah, I have surrendered to you and I have faith in you. I trust in you and I have turned to you. I have contested my opponents for your sake. O Allah, I seek refuge in your power from going astray, for there is no God but you. You are the Living who never dies, while the jinn and humans die.

Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 6948, Grade: Muttafaqun Alayhi

Abu Huraira reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

يَدْخُلُ الْجَنَّةَ أَقْوَامٌ أَفْئِدَتُهُمْ مِثْلُ أَفْئِدَةِ الطَّيْرِ

People whose hearts are like the hearts of birds will enter Paradise.

Source: Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim 2840, Grade: Sahih

Al-Nawawi commented on this tradition, saying:

قيل معْنَاهُ مُتوَكِّلُون وقِيلَ قُلُوبُهُمْ رقِيقةٌ

It is interpreted to mean those who rely upon Allah, or those who have soft hearts.

Source: Riyāḍ al-Ṣāliḥīn 1/45

Jabir reported: We took part in the expedition with the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him. When the time for afternoon rest approached, he was in a valley of thorny trees. The Prophet dismounted under a tree to rest in its shade and hung his sword upon it. The people dispersed among the trees for their shade. While we were like this, the Prophet called us and we came to find a bedouin sitting in front of him. The Prophet said:

إِنَّ هَذَا اخْتَرَطَ عَلَيَّ سَيْفِي وَأَنَا نَائِمٌ فَاسْتَيْقَظْتُ وَهُوَ فِي يَدِهِ صَلْتًا فَقَالَ مَنْ يَمْنَعُكَ مِنِّي فَقُلْتُ اللَّهُ ثَلَاثًا

This man stole my sword while I was sleeping and I woke up. It was in his hand unsheathed and he said: Who will protect you from me? I said three times: Allah.

Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 2753, Grade: Sahih

In another narration, the man said, “Who will protect you from me?” The Prophet said:

اللَّهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ

Allah Almighty.

Then, the sword fell from his hand and the Prophet seized it. The Prophet said:

مَنْ يَمْنَعُكَ مِنِّي

Who will protect you from me?

The idolater said, “Be good to me!” The Prophet said:

أَتَشْهَدُ أَنْ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا اللَّهُ وَأَنِّي رَسُولُ اللَّهِ

Will you bear witness that there is no god but Allah and I am the Messenger of Allah?

The man said, “No, but I give you my word that I will not fight you and I will not join anyone who is fighting you.” The Prophet let him go on his way. The man returned to his people and said:

جِئْتُكُمْ مِنْ عِنْدِ خَيْرِ النَّاسِ

I have just come to you from the best of people!

Source: Musnad Aḥmad 14768, Grade: Sahih

Umar ibn al-Khattab reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

لَوْ أَنَّكُمْ كُنْتُمْ تَوَكَّلُونَ عَلَى اللَّهِ حَقَّ تَوَكُّلِهِ لَرُزِقْتُمْ كَمَا يُرْزَقُ الطَّيْرُ تَغْدُو خِمَاصًا وَتَرُوحُ بِطَانًا

If you were to rely upon Allah with reliance due to him, he would provide for you just as he provides for the birds. They go out in the morning with empty stomachs and return full.

Source: Sunan al-Tirmidhī 2344, Grade: Sahih

Al-Bara’ ibn ‘Azib reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

إِذَا أَخَذْتَ مَضْجَعَكَ فَتَوَضَّأْ وُضُوءَكَ لِلصَّلاَةِ ثُمَّ اضْطَجِعْ عَلَى شِقِّكَ الأَيْمَنِ ثُمَّ قُلِ اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّي أَسْلَمْتُ وَجْهِي إِلَيْكَ وَفَوَّضْتُ أَمْرِي إِلَيْكَ وَأَلْجَأْتُ ظَهْرِي إِلَيْكَ رَغْبَةً وَرَهْبَةً إِلَيْكَ لاَ مَلْجَأَ وَلاَ مَنْجَا مِنْكَ إِلاَّ إِلَيْكَ آمَنْتُ بِكِتَابِكَ الَّذِي أَنْزَلْتَ وَبِنَبِيِّكَ الَّذِي أَرْسَلْتَ

When you go to sleep, perform ablution as for your prayer, then lie down on your right side and say: O Allah, I submit my face to you, and entrust my affair to you, and commit myself to you in hope and fear of you. There is no refuge or place of safety but with you. I believe in the Book you have revealed, and the Prophet you have sent.

Then, the Prophet said:

وَاجْعَلْهُنَّ مِنْ آخِرِ كَلاَمِكَ فَإِنْ مُتَّ مِنْ لَيْلَتِكَ مُتَّ وَأَنْتَ عَلَى الْفِطْرَةِ

Make these your last words. Verily, whoever said this and died in the night will have died upon natural instinct.

Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 5952, Grade: Muttafaqun Alayhi

Abu Bakr reported: While we were in the cave fleeing to Medina, I said to the Prophet, “If one of them were to look down, they would see us under their feet!” The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

يَا أَبَا بَكْرٍ مَا ظَنُّكَ بِاثْنَيْنِ اللَّهُ ثَالِثُهُمَا

O Abu Bakr, what do you think about two with whom Allah is the third?

Source: Sunan al-Tirmidhī 3096, Grade: Sahih

Umm Salamah reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, would say when leaving the house:

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ تَوَكَّلْتُ عَلَى اللَّهِ اللَّهُمَّ إِنَّا نَعُوذُ بِكَ مِنْ أَنْ نَزِلَّ أَوْ نَضِلَّ أَوْ نَظْلِمَ أَوْ نُظْلَمَ أَوْ نَجْهَلَ أَوْ يُجْهَلَ عَلَيْنَا

In the name of Allah, I trust in Allah, for there is no power or might but in Allah. Verily, we seek refuge in you from misstepping or being led astray, from being oppressed or oppressing others, from being abused or abusing others.

Source: Sunan al-Tirmidhī 3427, Grade: Sahih

Anas ibn Malik reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

مَنْ قَالَ يَعْنِي إِذَا خَرَجَ مِنْ بَيْتِهِ بِسْمِ اللَّهِ تَوَكَّلْتُ عَلَى اللَّهِ لَا حَوْلَ وَلَا قُوَّةَ إِلَّا بِاللَّهِ يُقَالُ لَهُ كُفِيتَ وَوُقِيتَ وَتَنَحَّى عَنْهُ الشَّيْطَانُ

Whoever says when he leaves his house, ‘In the name of Allah, I trust in Allah for there is no power or might but with Allah,’ it will be said to him that you have been sufficed and protected, and the devils will be far from him.

Source: Sunan al-Tirmidhī 3426, Grade: Sahih

Anas ibn Malik reported: There were two brothers in the time of the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, one of whom would attend the lessons of the Prophet and the other would engage in business. The businessman complained to the Prophet about his brother and the Prophet said:

لَعَلَّكَ تُرْزَقُ بِهِ

Perhaps you are granted provision because of him.

Source: Sunan al-Tirmidhī 2345, Grade: Sahih

Success comes from Allah, and Allah knows best.