What is Taqwa (Piousness, fear of Allah) and Who is Muttaqi (Pious)?

Taqwa (piousness) means, to fear, to refrain and to defend oneself from sins on account of fear of Allah. Muttaqi (pious) is a religious person who lives paying attention to taqwa.

The first thought about taqwa is to refrain from harams (forbidden things). Refraining from Makrooh acts (abominable acts) comes after that. Makrooh means a disgraceful and abominable act, talk or behavior. Giving them up is also of taqwa. After that, we confront doubtful things. They have a relationship with harams like as makrooh acts. The suitable behavior in the name of taqwa, when confronting a doubtful, undefined matter, is to think its probability of being haram and to give it up. Then, Mubah (permissible) and Halâl (Lawful) acts and behaviors come. Enjoying them sufficiently and avoiding waste is also of taqwa.

Allah’s Messenger (Peace and Blessings be Upon Him), in one of his Hadiths says:

Lawful things are defined, so are unlawful things. However, there are some suspicious things between these two. When a shepherd puts his sheep out to pasture near a forest, there is a possibility that sheep could enter into that forest at any time; similarly, the one who does not refrain from doubtful things could go into harams.

A taqwa lesson from the Holy Qur’an:

… Fear the Fire whose fuel is men and stones… (The Surah Heifer (Al-Baqarah), 24)

Commentators state that the stones mentioned in this verse are idols. There is another dreadful threat for a believer in this verse in addition to a grievous hell whose fuel is the stones. It is burning together with those idols, the contempt of sharing the same punishment and being exposed to the same treatment with them.

Taqwa and good deed are two fundamentals bringing about development of the spirit and heart. Immaterial benefits are acquired by good deeds. Those benefits are secured and harms are kept away by means of taqwâ. A person who does not block the roads of evil will lose more than he gains and this attitude leads to bankruptcy.

This Hadith about bankruptcy is dreadful and terrifying:

Bankrupt from my Ummah is a person that comes with deeds such as prayers, fast and alms in the Doomsday. Nonetheless, he swore at people, slandered, defrauded them, and hurt or chastised some of them. His rewards are divided up among those people whom he harmed. If his deeds do not suffice, then some misdeeds of those people are placed onto him and he is sent to hell.

There are three stages of taqwa:

1. Taqwa against polytheism: Refraining from polytheism by having faith in Allah. Thus, a person protects himself/herself from hell.

2. Taqwâ against sins: Refraining from committing the major sins and from insisting committing the minor sins. This is the most common definition of taqwa.

3. Taqwa against everything except Allah: Abstaining from everything intercepting the connection between Allah and the heart.

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