Hanzalah Al-Usayyidi, may Allah be pleased with him, reported
لقيني أبو بكر رضي الله عنه فقال: كيف أنت يا حنظلة؟ قلت: نافق حنظلة؟ قلت: نافق حنظلة ( قال: سبحان الله ما تقول؟ ( قلت: نكون عند رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يذكرنا بالجنة والنار كأنا رأي عين، فإذا خرجنا من عند رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم عافسنا الأزواج والأولاد والضيعات نسينا كثيراً. قال أبو بكر رضي الله عنه : فوالله إنا لنلقى مثل هذا، فانطلقت أنا وأبو بكر حتى دخلنا على رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم. فقلت: نافق حنظلة يا رسول الله ( فقال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم : ”وما ذاك؟” قلت: يا رسول الله نكون عندك تذكرنا بالنار والجنة كأنا رأي العين، فإذا خرجنا من عندك عافسنا الأزواج والأولاد والضيعات نسينا كثيراً. فقال رسول الله 0: ”والذي نفسي بيده لو تدومون على ما تكونون عندي وفي الذكر لصافحتكم الملائكة على فرشكم وفي طرقكم، ولكن يا حنظلة ساعة وساعة” ثلاث مرات،
I met Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him) he said: “How are you O Hanzalah?” I said, “Hanzalah has become a hypocrite”. He said, “Far removed is Allah from every imperfection, what are you saying?” I said, “When we are in the company of Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and he reminds us of Hell-fire and Jannah, we feel as if we are seeing them with our very eyes, and when we are away from Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), we attend to our wives, our children, our business, most of these things (pertaining to life hereafter) slip out of our minds.” Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him) said, “By Allah, I also experience the same thing”. So Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him) and I went to Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and I said to him, “O Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), Hanzalah has turned hypocrite.” Thereupon Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “What has happened to you?” I said, “O Messenger of Allah, when we are in your company, and are reminded of Hell-fire and Jannah, we feel as if we are seeing them with our own eyes, but when we go away from you and attend to our wives, children and business, much of these things go out of our minds.” Thereupon Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “By Him in Whose Hand is my life if your state of mind remains the same as it is in my presence and you are always busy in remembrance (of Allah), the angels will shake hands with you in your beds and in your roads; but Hanzalah, time should be devoted (to the worldly affairs) and time should be devoted (to prayer)”. He (the Prophet (ﷺ)) said this thrice.
I wanted to say something more about this, but I’m listening to an excellent lecture by Shaikh Yasir Birjas, and he does a better job, than I would, so I’ll leave him to take it from here.
And just to tie it all back in to shifting focus, and recent reminders here, as the hadith of Hanzalah reminds us, we sometimes focus on Allah and His beautiful attributes, we sometimes remember Him and keep His rememberance on our tongues and in our hearts, but sometimes we get busy with daily life and forget. I, for one, am not always able to remember Allah with as much focus as I would like, as often as I would like. It’s not hypocrisy, and it’s not something to worry about, but I have to pay attention, and try to right myself, try some little things to boost Iman and get back on track.
أن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قال: “الإيمان بضع وسبعون، أو بضع وستون شعبة، فأفضلها قول لا إله إلا الله، وأدناها إماطة الأذى عن الطريق، والحياء شعبة من الإيمان”
Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “Iman has sixty odd or seventy odd branches. The uppermost of all these is the Testimony of Faith: ‘La ilaha illallah’ (there is no true god except Allah) while the least of them is the removal of harmful object from the road. And shyness is a branch of Iman.”