Hirs-o-Hawas, the root of all evils

أعوذ بالله من الشيطان الرجيم

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Hirs-o-Hawas, the mother of all diseases

All praise to Allah. Let peace, blessings be on our beloved unlettered Prophet, his family and his noble companions. I seek refuge in Allah from the accursed shaitan and I begin in the name of Allah, the most beneficent, the most merciful.

Alhakumu alttakathur.

Hatta zurtumu almaqabir.

The mutual rivalry (for piling up of worldly things) diverts you.

Until you visit the graves (i.e. till you die).

My dear esteemed, honorable brothers and elders of Islam and the sacred mothers and sisters of the sanctified ummat-e-islam, there are some diseases which give birth to other diseases; there are some sins that give birth to lot of other sins; and there are some mistakes through which a lot of fasad (corruption) spreads. There is one such disease that our beloved Prophet ﷺ pointed out and that is Hirs-o-Hawas (whims and desires). One buzurg said that this is not a disease but ummul-amraaz, the mother of all diseases. A Sahabi  narrated that once Prophet ﷺ was giving a sermon when he preached that, “Save your self from whims and desires for the earlier nations got destroyed because of this disease.” This same Hirs-o-Hawas called them towards Bukhl (niggardliness) and made them misers. This same Hirs-o-Hawas called them towards kata talluq (severing ties) and the family system got destroyed. This same Hirs-o-Hawas called them towards vicious acts and they became filthy. This is such a destructive disease that fasad spreads through out the society and you can see this disease behind every single evil.

Today Hirs-o-Hawas increased in shahawat (love of passion) and the streets became filthy and the educational institutes became filthy. Hir-o-hawas of money and wealth brought haram provision inside the houses; bribery and adulteration became common and there is only corruption everywhere. Hir-o-hawas increased in Jaah (fame), izzat (honor), ohada (official rank or position), mansab (priorate) and the value and dignity of humanity came to an end. Who can be the best doctor of this ummat other than the Prophet of Allah ﷺ? Who can make an accurate prognosis of the diseases other than the Prophet ﷺ? Now he ﷺ is saying to save one self from this disease and that the previous nations got destroyed by this. It is said that the dacoit or the thief robs because of extreme poverty. This is a very foolish thought. The dacoit or the thief doesn’t steal for ghurbat (poverty) but because of the fact that he is deprived of contentment and patience and he is the patient of Hirs-o-Hawas. Did you ever see a dacoit who left robbing after he gathered some one lakh rupees? Did he leave his job thinking “Oh now I have gathered two lakh rupees, so let me leave this job?” Those biggest thieves sitting in the form of corrupt people, are they really poor? They got afflicted with this dangerous disease of Hirs-o-Hawas. That is why our beloved Prophet ﷺ labeled this disease as something very destructive.

The richness of the heart

The Prophet ﷺ said, “Indeed he is successful who got the truth of Islam and got the daily provision through proper means and that Allah ﷻ has granted him the contentment over his daily provision.” He is content that Allah ﷻ has given him so much. Hazrat Abu Dharr  said, “My huzur ﷺ told me something three times. He ﷺ said, ‘Oh Abu Dharr , do you think the one who has money is rich?” I said, “Ya Rasoolullah, yes this is what we think.” He ﷺ then said, “Do you think the one who doesn’t have money is a faqeer (poor)?” I said, “Ya Rasoolullah, yes this is what we think.”” Abu Dharr  says that the Prophet of Allah ﷺ said this to him three times. Prophet ﷺ then said, “O Abu Dharr, the richness is to do with the heart and the poverty is to do with the heart.” Those who are having less money can be rich in the heart and those who have more money can be poor in the heart. The real richness is to do with the contentment of the heart that it got so much. If a faqeer is fortunate to get this contentment, then his life will become more pleasurable than the Kings and very delicious than the life of the Kings. If this wealth of contentment goes away from either the rich or the poor, then he will never be peaceful. The fire of Hirs-o-Hawas will keep burning him from inside.

The fire of Hirs-o-Hawas can be extinguished only with contentment

This is our misunderstanding that the fire of Hirs-o-Hawas will be extinguished when it gets fulfilled when it will only aggravate. This is like saying fire is extinguished by throwing dry grass in it. The fire of Hirs-o-Hawas will be extinguished only by contentment. So Prophet ﷺ said that the previous nations had this disease of Hirs-o-Hawas, which ruined them, made them misers and destroyed their family life. It is because of this Hirs-o-Hawas, today the brother has become a danger for the sister instead of becoming her patron and the elder brother is abandoning his younger brothers. He is selling the liver and kidneys of the patient because of Hirs-o-Hawas. He is feeding others poison to decorate his house and this is Hirs-o-Hawas. The Hirs-o-Hawas didn’t leave any food pure. What a destructive disease! Even the earth is not left with its purity for the man showed his Hirs-o-Hawas on the earth and it got destroyed and the food coming from it is filled just with chemicals and diseases.

Hirs-o-Hawas and the state of this world

The whole world was so set to ablaze with this Hirs-o-Hawas that man finds no protection against it. Let Allah ﷻ forgive us, the schools and colleges where we send our children to build their knowledge are the places where this fire is burnt like how to earn the money, how to acquire the rank and position and how to gather the wealth. Those who are ruining the humans are not the ignorant tribal people residing in some mountains and the ones who are leading in corruption are not from jungles but unfortunately they are from these very same institutes where they obtained all their education. It is not the ignorant who does all these adulterations and in every single place, it is this disease that is shooting up. The biggest doctor of this Ummat Muhammad ﷺ came to eradicate this disease, to kill this disease from the root because if this disease enters the hearts of men, then the whole society will be ruined and the fire of battles and disputes will set ablaze. If you take the history of mankind and look at the wars between the two nations, you will see Hirs-o-Hawas behind them for he needs one more empire and reign, he wants to increase his social prestige and he needs more ministries and he wants his coffers to get filled more. What a destructive disease is this!

Fulfilling the desires is not the objective of this life

Our beloved Prophet ﷺ in defense of this gave contentment to this ummat and he himself ﷺ became a model for this.  Hazrat Jibraeel  came and said, “Ya Rasoolullah, Allah is saying if you like He ﷻ can turn the mountain of Uhad into gold and wherever you want the mountain too could move with you.” If filling the stomach of the ummat was the only job of the Prophet ﷺ, he would have arranged such that not a single Muslim of his ummat would go hungry even for a single day. If filling the stomach and fulfilling the desires and passions are the objectives of this life, and acquiring higher positions and ranks is called the life, then our beloved Prophet ﷺ would have got so much wealth for this ummat from Allah ﷻ that there won’t be any need for anyone to tie the stone on the stomach and there won’t be any starvation.

Arya samaj was one of the biggest Hindu movements and there was a debate between a pious elder and a man of that samaj. First came the food to serve them and the Hindu man really ate well while Hazrat ate a little and rested. Seeing this the Hindu man said to the Hazrat, “You lost the debate. When you can’t compete with me in eating, how you will debate with me on Islam.’ Hazrat replied, “If the competition is on eating, I would have brought an elephant to compete with you .If the excellence is in eating, then I would have brought some animal while the excellence of a man is to be content with food and to seek the pleasure of His Lord.” The man’s personality will get the beauty and elegance when he reins in his desires, have patience and embrace contentment. If you want to have greediness, then have it for righteous deeds. Allah ﷻ asks us to race towards acquiring His ﷻ love, in doing righteous deeds and in achieving jannah for this is the field of race where we have to advance to the front and this is the real competition. So Hazrat said if fulfilling the passions is called the life, then we have so many animals whose life goes around this very objective.

The excellence of man is in attaching to a thing only to the extent of fulfilling his need and to be content and patient and he competes with others only in getting close to Allah ﷻ and in achieving the bliss of the akhirat (the next life). So the beloved Prophet ﷺ diagnosed this disease of Hirs-o-Hawas in the humankind that this will bring only destruction. Those who get interest, they don’t always get it for the greed of money but for the greed of fame to show people he has so many factories and out of fear that what people will think of him if he has one factory less. This is the greediness of fame and he is proclaiming war against Allah ﷻ for this. He is so hunger of love of fame that he is ready for the war with Allah ﷻ but he can’t give up the sin. How many houses are there those that don’t have the chador of hayaa thinking what the society will say? They want the fake honor from the society by living without purdah. This is nothing but the hirs (greediness) of fake honor. This Hirs-o-Hawas has shown strange scenes in this world. The brothers stand in the court as enemies for the land disputes and Hirs-o-Hawas is behind this. The family is breaking because of this Hirs-o-Hawas. How many methods are there in the society today to display this fake honor? So the hirs is not just for wealth but also for fame that people praise him. How many are there to get this fake praise they do things which are out of their capability. So you can guess how destructive this disease is. That is why Allah ﷻ says

Alhakumu alttakathur.

Hatta zurtumu almaqabir.

The mutual rivalry (for piling up of worldly things) diverts you.

Until you visit the graves (i.e. till you die).

Remember death, the destroyer of pleasures

The whole life passes in running behind the fake fame and glory, and the greediness of wealth, honor and passion. Even if a man has a halal wife, the fire of hirs dirtied his youth. She has a halal husband but the fire of hirs destroyed her family. They just lack the contentment. This Hirs-o-Hawas has set fire everywhere and the cure for this disease is contentment. Prophet ﷺ asked us to remember the destroyer of pleasures often and that is the death. The wayfarer who firmly believes that he has to undertake the journey will try his best to keep his load lighter so his journey becomes easy. The more the life is under the control of man, the better will be his journey without much difficulty. And when he is in a place where he doesn’t have to undertake any journey, he spreads his things; he progresses in his business and expands it. That is why Prophet ﷺ asked us to remember death often for this journey of life will end.

We have the next world to fulfill all our desires

This world is not the place to spread but place to gather and this not the place of Hirs-o-Hawas but the place of contentment and patience. Yes there is a place called the next world, where one can fulfill all his desires as he wishes. walakum feehaa maa tashtahee anfusukumAnd for you therein whatever you desire. And this cannot happen in this world and you have to roll up your desires here. Stop the desires of your nafs if you want peace and if you want to see islaami, eemani and humanity values inside you or else this Hirs-o-Hawas will not just remove islaami and eemani value but it will remove even the value of humanity from you and the man will become an animal. He will become shameless like an animal and no humanity will be left in him.  How strange is this to take advantage of the disease of the man and to earn the money playing with the patient’s life and to earn money playing with the eeman and deen of people! Can a human do this? This Hirs-o-Hawas won’t leave a human to be a human. So have contentment and what more you need in a journey for you have so much from Allah ﷻ. Believe it when a man gets this wealth of contentment and satisfaction, in spite of being poor he will lead a pleasurable life and this is such a pleasure which cannot be obtained by millions and millions of dollars.

What is falaah?

A pious elder said that a man came to him who had so much of wealth. The Hazrat told him, ‘Stop now’, when the man replied, ‘Hazrat, this greediness of hands doesn’t allow me to stop.’ This Hirs-o-Hawas will take one to the grave and it will never stop. The Muslim’s life will be beautified only when he gets rid of this mother of all diseases. A pious elder said that falaah (welfare) is that when a slave asks ten things to Allah ﷻ and Allah ﷻ grants him all, and a slave seeks refuge in Allah ﷻ from all the adversities and Allah  ﷻ grants him the refuge. This is falaah. ulaaika humul muflihoon-Those are the successful. Qad aflahal muminoon- Successful indeed are the believers. Allah ﷻ is saying: Wa maeinyooqa shuhha nafsihee fa ulaaika humul muflihoon- and whosoever is saved from his own greed and miserliness, such are the successful. This falaah is not that he asks anything in this world and he gets it but it is intended to say that Allah ﷻ will grant him the falaah of akhirat where he will get all ten things if he asks for that and Allah ﷻ will protect him from every single difficulty but yes right in this world he will get to taste the glimpse of falaah of akhirat in the form of satisfaction, contentment in his heart and barkat in his life. This will be achieved by the one who saves himself from this destructive disease.

Hirs for righteous deeds

Whatever Allah ﷻ has given, be it in the form of wealth, fame or honor, a man of contentment thinks Allah ﷻ has given him so much. There is no place for Hirs-o-Hawas in these things for its place is different and it is there we have to advance. Once with a strong yearning, Hazrat Umar  said, ‘This siddique advances me to a greater extent in the field of righteous deeds and he doesn’t give me a chance to compete with him.’ And this is Umar  whose greatness is known. One night our beloved Prophet ﷺ was with his wife Ayesha (Radhiyallahu anha) and the sky was clear with innumerable stars. Watching this, the beloved mother Ayesha (Radhiyallahu anha) asked Prophet ﷺ, ‘Ya Rasoolullah, is there anyone in your ummat who has so much of righteous deeds that would surpass these number of stars?” Prophet ﷺ replied, “Yes O Ayesha, Umar  has his righteous deeds greater than these numbers of stars.” Hearing this, the beloved mother Ayesha (Radhiyallahu anha) became silent. Our beloved Prophet understood her silence and said, ‘O Ayesha I know why you became silent for you thought that I would mention your father’s name (Abu Bakar Siddique ).’ Ayesha (Radhiyallahu anha) affirmed this. Prophet ﷺ said, ‘O Ayesha, Umar’s righteous deeds of his whole life is equal to righteous deeds of one night of your father when he spent his night with me in the cave.’ That is why Umar  used to tell Abu Bakar Siddique , ‘Oh Abu Bakar, take all my deeds and give me the deed of your hijrat which you did with the Prophet ﷺ.’ They had strange yearning, greediness, desire and interest for righteous deeds. There came a chance of competition through the battle of Tabuk and Umar  was very happy in competing with Abu Bakar  thinking that today he will win the race and beat Siddique . maashaaAllah what a passion we see and as far as those who care for the akhirat, this is how they will show the passion and now when my objective is to do with this dunya, then I will compete only for the worldly things. People are fighting for cars, houses and lands. For few rupees, they are talking the lives of humans and what sort of animals and cruel men they are. A man is killed just for a mobile. What rapaciousness!

Umar  too had the passion and he gathered half of his belongings and presented before the Prophet ﷺ and Siddique  too came there with his belongings.  Now Prophet ﷺ asked, ‘Umar, what did you bring?’ Umar  replied, ‘Ya Rasoolullah I brought half of my belongings.’ He ﷺ then asked Siddique , ‘Oh Siddique what did you bring?’ And Siddique  replied, ‘Ya Rasoolullah, I brought all my belongings.’ Umar  then said, ‘I can never beat this guy.’ There came some sahabahs who brought more to present it to the Prophet ﷺ when he ﷺ refused taking them all fearing they can’t face the hardship later but Prophet ﷺ took everything from Abu Bakar Siddique  because he ﷺ knew that he  had a strong contact with Allah ﷻ and has so much of contentment and patience. So Hirs-o-Hawas is for this field of righteous deeds and when they have hirs in this field, they won’t have hatred but only love. When people have hirs for dunya, then there will only thorns of hatred. When one gets hirs for wealth, fame, rank, priorate, then fights, disputes arises and the nations break apart. When there is passion for righteousness, then we get the flowers of love blossoming.

Competing for akhirat brings in love and competing for dunya brings in hatred

Take any house where women are competing for righteousness, you will see the garden of love and when you see the competition in fashion, there will be only fights and you can see this amusement in the houses today. When you see the place which has only worldly talks, you will see only fights and when you see the place where they compete for akhirat, you will see the love of flowers blossoming. You can take those houses where brothers compete with each other for akhirat, you will see they will have love for each other and when they compete for world, you will never see the love in them. The nation which has passion for righteousness will be united and when they have passion for dunya, they will have hatred. There was Bilal , Shuaib , Sulaiman  and all from different tribes and nationality and of different colors but they were advancing each other in righteousness so it was felt as if they were all the children of one mother. Today we have the hirs for dunya and children of one mother are not united. Even the husband and the wife who lived together for fifty years for dunya won’t look united because of having Hirs-o-Hawas but if they were competing for righteousness, you will see the love in them. We get the complaints that there is no peace in the house, the brother fights, the father fights and the mother is always in tension. But this will be the state when there is concern only for dunya. Every assembly of the family reflects competition in fashion, in doing make ups, in dressing and in jewellery. Inna lillahi wa inna ilaihi raajioon.

These were not the examples of Muslims life and this was not the style of a Muslim. The Muslims used to remember and talk about righteousness in every sitting and gathering learning from each other and they used to compete like if she can recite this much of Quran, then I will recite more than her, if she embraces Taqwa to this level, then I can achieve Taqwa higher than her and this is how they used to have Hirs-o-Hawas. The time when people started having Hirs-o-Hawas for the dunya, there was only corruption. Muhaajir Imdaadullah Makki (rahimahullah) used to say, ‘When two things enter, there will be only fasad (corruption) and those are Takabbur (pride, arrogance) and Hirs.’ Let it enter houses, jamaat, or anything, it will only bring fasad. In fact the base of Takabbur is Hirs. The Takabbur makes one to feel exalted above others that people should accept him and he has the attitude ‘I’ ‘I’ ‘I’ and this is from the hirs of fame. The hearts will break when Hirs and Takabbur is present. In contrary to this, when there is eesaar (wishing good for others and giving priority to others while suppressing one’s own desires) and humbleness, the hearts will unite. Eesaar and humbleness comes from contentment and the man of humility won’t desire for fame.

So honorable ones, one should seek refuge from this destructive disease and one should develop the quality of contentment within one self and an easy way to obtain this contentment is to remember death and to remember about the life after death. Now people get depressed when they hear the word death but brothers and sisters our beloved Prophet ﷺ was the doctor and he ﷺ was aware of this disease and that is why he gave this tip to remember death often which is the destroyer of all pleasures. Remember those who pass away suddenly and think that you too can pass away like this. We will then inshaaAllah get the contentment when we remember like this. If you go behind fulfilling this Hirs-o-Hawas, its fire will only aggravate. You should control this and you should end this by remembering death like how many days you will be alive and how long you will lead a wishful life. What is the use of that izzat (honor) after which you will have zillat (humiliation)? What is the use of all those ranks and positions after which you will have deprivation? The real taste and pleasure is in that rank which is eternal and which will be obtained after death. So Have the hirs for that eternal bliss and worry about achieving that.


Let Allah ﷻ save me and you from this destructive disease of Hirs-o-Hawas and grant us the wealth of contentment. wa aakhirud daawaana alhamdulillahi rabbil aalameen. All praise to Allah ﷻ. Let peace, blessings be on our beloved unlettered Prophet, his family and his noble companions. All praises and thanks are to Allah ﷻ and glory is to Him ﷻ. Let Allah ﷻ make us remember Him ﷻ excessively, to show Him ﷻ gratitude and to worship Him ﷻ in the most beautiful manner. Let Allah ﷻ grant us tawfeeq to act on what we hear and preach. Let Allah ﷻ grant us life of eeman, peace and tranquility. Let Allah ﷻ grant us His ﷻ talluq and love and a life pure from sins and grant us hatred and despise for the sins. Let Allah ﷻ grant us a death of eeman. Let Allah ﷻ protect us and our houses from all sort of shameful acts and protect our children. Let Allah ﷻ make our children obedient to Him ﷻ and to their parents. Let Allah ﷻ protect us from all sort of fitna and disobedience of children. Let Allah ﷻ protect us from every single destructive disease and protect us from the life of hospitals and protect us from dangers of heavens and the earth. Let Allah ﷻ grant us all halal provision by His ﷻ mercy and save us from haram provision. Let Allah ﷻ grant us the wealth of contentment and a grateful life and protect us from the destructive disease of Hirs-o-Hawas and grant us the remembrance of death for every single time of our life and grant us the real concern for the akhirat.

Let Allah ﷻ save us from going astray after granting us guidance. Let Allah ﷻ save us from humiliation after honoring us and save us from worries after granting us peace. Let Allah ﷻ save us from going empty handed after spreading hands before Him ﷻ. Let Allah ﷻ by His ﷻ immense mercy and grace, make us faqeer only at His ﷻ door and protect us from becoming dependents of His ﷻ creations and protect us from spreading hands before the creations. Let Allah ﷻ protect our lives, wealth and honor and do not put us in the hands of oppressors, evil ones and irreligious ones. Let Allah  ﷻ grant us all His ﷻ shade of victory and mercy. Let Allah ﷻ guide all the Muslims and make the guidance common among the people. Let Allah ﷻ protect our nation and grant it istekhaam (stability) to it and make it a place of peace. Let Allah ﷻ protect the Muslims from the evils of those who cause fitna among Muslims and those who spread filth among the Muslims. Let Allah ﷻ grant all the good health and cure the diseases of those who are sick. Rabbana taqabbal minna innaka antas samee ul aleem wa tub alayna innaka antat tawwabur raheem. O our Lord ! accept (this service) from us,verily You and You (alone) are the Hearer,the Knower,surely You are the receiver of repentance,the Merciful. Let peace, blessings be on our beloved Prophet, his family and his noble companions. Amin amin thumma amin


1 Response to “Hirs-o-Hawas, the root of all evils”

  1. 1 fatima August 18, 2012 at 2:29 pm


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