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Tazkiyatun Nafs

Last updated: 26th August 2005
Question ID: #711
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26th August 2005

Assalamu Alaikum: I have read in a few books that tazkiyatun nafs only through a Shaykh is fardh and in some places it says wajib. The Daleel they use is 'WA YUZAKKIHIM' from the Qur'aan. Does this mean that all those who do [b:ee0ba505a1]not[/b:ee0ba505a1] go through the means of a Shaykh will be sinful for missing a Fardh or Wajib according to them? Can Tazkiya not be achieved by living a simple life? Those who also are very sinful, can tazkiya not be achieved through regret, repentance, salah and du'aa? I do not refute seeking guidance from s shaykh or scholar which is why I am asking here too. I do not deny that there are plenty more benefits having a spiritual guide who is already close to Allah. My concern is how easily scholars say it's is Fardh or it is Waajib. Please correct me if i'm wrong and may Allah forgive me if i'm wrong. Assalamu alaikum

Ulamaa ID 11
Answer last updated on:
9th December 2007
Answered by:
Ulamaa ID 11
Location: UK
Assalamu Alaykum W W W,

'Tazkiyatun nafs' literaly means 'the purification of the soul'. It is neither 'fardh (compalsary)' nor 'waajib (neccessary)' to be acquainted with a Shaykh (spiritual guide) in order to achieve this. The reason why this association is made generally is because a spiritual guide is able to aid one in purifying themselves by instructing them on how to conduct themselves and the inner condition of their hearts and conscience. This assosiation works like a catalyst in erradicating the evil from 'within' and gain stability and progress in ones worship and daily lifestyle. The shaykh is by no means an equivelant or similar to the christian priests of confession. The Shaykh does not possess god-like qualities and it is a major sin to believe the Shaykh is able to resolve issues out of his own accord. The job of a spiritual guide is to disentangle one from the evils of this world and join them with their Lord.

Thus, tazkiya can be achieved (Insh-Allah) via sincere repentence and self control etc. yet a Shaykh is expected to take you that one little step further (Insha-Allah)

And Allah (SWT) knows best.