Correcting the Two Strengths of Knowledge and Action
The saying of Allaah Ta’ala :
((By Al-'Asr (the time). Verily! Man is in loss, except those who
believe and do righteous good deeds, and recommend one another to
the truth and recommend one another to patience.))
Ash-Shafiee – may Allaah be pleased with him – said: ‘If all the people
reflected over this Soorah it would be sufficient for them.’
The explanation of this is that this Soorah has four levels, and by completing
these, a person can achieve the highest goal in being complete.
The first is: Knowing the truth.
The second: his acting upon the truth.
The third: Him teaching the one who is deficient in the truth.
The fourth: Being patient in learning the truth, and acting upon it, and
Allaah Ta’ala mentioned these four levels in this Soorah, and Allaah
Subhanahu testified in this Soorah by al-Asr (the time) that everyone is in loss,
except those who believe and do righteous, good deeds and they are those
who knew the truth, and they testified to the truth.
So the above is a level.
They did righteous, good deeds and they are those who performed worship
with what they knew about the truth.
So this is a level.
They advise with the truth; they advise one another, teaching and guiding
So this is the third level.
They advise with patience; they were patient with the truth, and they advised
each other with patience upon the truth, and to be steadfast.
And this is the fourth level.
This is the end of completeness; indeed completeness is that a person is
complete in himself, and completes others. His completeness is by
correcting his two strengths, the strength of knowledge and the strength of
actions. Correction of the strength of knowledge is with Emaan, and
correction of the strength of actions is by doing righteous deeds, and by
completing people other than himself, and by learning this knowledge, and
being patient upon it, and his recommending with patience upon knowledge
So this Soorah, even though it is brief, is one of the most collective soorahs
of the Qur’aan for goodness from all its different angles.
Praise be to Allaah Who has made the Qur’aan sufficient for everything, a
cure from every disease, a guidance to all that is good.
All Praise belongs to Allaah, may His peace and blessings be upon our final Prophet Muhammad, his family, his companions and all those who follow his guidance.
Shaykh ul –Islaam
Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah
‘Miftah dar as-Sa’ada’
(key to the land of happiness)