Richness 410


Allah, the Almighty, said:

{And He found you poor and made you rich.}411 [aḍ-Ḍuḥâ 93:8]

قَالَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ: "وَوَجَدَكَ عَائِلًا فَأَغْنَى"

Ghinâ (richness) refers to complete ownership.412 It is of three levels:

الْغِنَى اسْمٌ لِلْمِلْكِ التَّامِّ. وَهُوَ عَلَى ثَلَاثِ دَرَجَاتٍ.

The first level is the richness of the heart, and it involves:

  1. freedom from (reliance on) the causes413

  2. being at peace with the decrees414

  3. riddance from antagonism415

الدَّرَجَةُ الْأُولَى غِنَى الْقَلْبِ، وَهُوَ:

  1. سَلَامَتُهُ مِنَ السَّبَبِ

  2. وَمُسَالَمَتُهُ لِلْحُكْمِ

  3. وَخَلَاصُهُ مِنَ الْخُصُومَةِ

The second level is the richness of the nafs,416 and it concerns:

  1. its consistent pursuit of the final goal [Allah]

  2. its clearance of abominations417

  3. its clearance of ostentation

والدَّرَجَةُ الثَّانِيَةُ غِنَى النَّفْسِ، وَهُوَ:

  1. اسْتِقَامَتُهَا عَلَى الْمَرْغُوبِ

  2. وَسَلَامَتُهَا مِنَ المَسْخوطِ

  3. وَبَرَاءَتُهَا مِنَ الْمُرَاءَاةِ

The third level is sufficiency by the True One,418 and it is of three levels:

  1. the first level is considering His remembrance of you

  2. the second is observing His First-ness (antecedence)

  3. The third is the ultimate success of finding Him 419

والدَّرَجَةُ الثَّالِثَةُ الْغِنَى بِالْحَقِّ، وَهُوَ عَلَى ثَلَاثِ مَرَاتِبَ:

  1. الْمَرْتَبَةُ الْأُولَى شُهُودُ ذِكْرِهِ إِيَّاكَ

  2. وَالثَّانِيَةُ دَوَامُ مَطَالَعَةِ أَوَّلِيَّتِهِ

  3. وَالثَّالِثَةُ الْفَوْزُ بِوُجُودِهِ

410 Ghinâ literally means richness/affluence, which is freedom from needs and wants. To some, it is actualized by possessing desirables; to others, it is actualized by not having those needs to begin with. To the seekers, it means freedom from worldly wants/needs.
411This refers to both forms of richness: the material one and the spiritual one. While the Prophet ﷺ lived a life of abstemiousness, he was free of need of anyone other than his Lord. He used to invoke Allah by saying:

"اقْضِ عَنَّا الدَّيْنَ وَأَغْنِنَا مِنَ الْفَقْر."

“Remove the burden of debt from us and relieve us from poverty/want.” (Muslim)
412The ownership of the creations is temporal and contingent. Thus, in truth, no one is self-sufficient except Allah. Our ghinâ (inner richness) is by Him. Richness that is attributed to the traveler here is richness by Allah. He (exalted is He) said:
{يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ أَنتُمُ الْفُقَرَاءُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَاللَّهُ هُوَ الْغَنِيُّ الْحَمِيدُ}

{O mankind, you are those in need of Allah, while Allah is the Free of need, the Praiseworthy.} (Fâṭir 35:15)
413 While one must engage them in accordance with the God-ordained nawâmees (universal law/natural order), their reliance is entirely on the Causer.
414 The commands and prohibitions must be accepted wholeheartedly. The universal decrees must also be received with patience and gratitude. Those that are undesirable should be resisted until they occur. Once they do, then they must be accepted with patience while their effects are being prudently mitigated.
415 One who has no need for the creations will not be antagonistic because of greed or excessive competition. However, they will oppose and resist them for the good cause of Divine justice.
416 While the actions of the heart are greater, Ibn al-Qayyim points out in Madârij that al-Harawi mentions the nafs at this level because it is the most rebellious of the heart’s subordinates; once it is fully tamed, the road is paved for ascendance to the third level.
417 Lowly pursuits.
418Allah says:
{أَلَيْسَ اللَّهُ بِكَافٍ عَبْدَهُ}

{Is not Allah sufficient for His servant?...} (az-Zumar 39:36)
419 Beholding Him with the ‘eyes of the heart’ in this dunyâ and those of the head in the hereafter.

Manâzil as-Sâirin


Shaykhul-Islam Abu Isma‘il Abdullah ibn Muhammad al-Ansari al-Harawi (396-481H)

Translation and Footnotes


Hatem al-Haj