One of the most dangerous enemies is the one we do not know. This enemy lives among us. He eats and drinks with us. He is known to us. But, we do not know that he is an opposer. He does not act like a foe. Apparently, he believes in the same faith as we do. He bows down before Allah in the same way as we do. He recites Qur’an and praises our Prophet (peace be upon him) just like a true Muslim. But, on the inside, he has tremendous hatred towards the believers and the faithful. Such people wear a mask over their real character. These are the ’Munafiqeen’—the hypocrites. They the most dangerous peril to Islam as they always have been. The need of the hour is to identify them, expose them and eliminate the hypocrisy and hatred in them. At a number of instances in the Holy Qur’an, Allah talks about the hypocrites and their hypocrisy. The second and the longest chapter Surah Al-Baqarah also details Munafiqeen. A hypocrite is a person who talks white but acts black. A hypocrite has many faces. He speaks one word but believes in the other. He praises in front of a person but speaks ill of the same person when he is not around. Masked faces, irrational words and backbiting are their hallmarks. Hypocrisy is of many kinds. One is the hypocrisy towards Allah. This is being hypocrite regarding faith. Then there are hypocrites who play with the tenets of faith such as the Day of Judgement, Accounting, Sales of Deed, Hellfire and the like. Yet, they claim that that fear God. Another type of hypocrisy is hypocrisy towards other people. Such muafiqeen misguide others. The last Messenger of Allah, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) has said that there are four distinct traits of a dissembler. A munafiq may possess one, many or all of such traits.
Be aware of hypocrites! They can be anywhere—in your offices, your neighbourhood, on the playfield and even inside your home. Identify, advise and eliminate hypocrisy.
Our Prophet listed the traits of such pretenders: (i) When such a person talks, he speaks plain lies. There is not an ounce of truthfulness in his words. (ii) A hypocrite makes false promises. He doesn’t fulfil his words. He violates what he promises. (iii) When a munafiq makes a covenant, he acts in treachery and cheating. They are heathens. They misguide. They rupture agreements. They commit large-scale frauds. (iv) A deceiver is quarrelsome. He often enters into unreasonable brawls. And when he fights, he deviates from principles of truthfulness. He fights on petty issues. Apart from all these traits, an impostor is vulgar and indecent. He may apparently seem to be a man of words. But, in reality, he is a fox in the skin of a lion. The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said that a hypocrite is very dangerous. They have always brought trouble to Muslims and Islam. Today, the story is not different. Today, we have a large number of hypocrites in our neighbourhood. We are in danger. The need of the hour is to think wisely. We need to understand the traits of these hypocrites. Then we must expose them. Later on, we should get rid of them. The guide put before us by the Almighty Allah and the teachings of our beloved Prophet (pbuh) must be understood and followed. These black sheep must be spotted amongst the herd. We can not afford to let them bring more damage to us. Be aware of hypocrites! They can be anywhere—in your offices, your neighbourhood, on the playfield and even inside your home. Identify, advise and eliminate hypocrisy.