Who are the seven groups to be given shade under the Throne (Arsh) on the day of Judgment? What characteristics enable this?

Details of the Question

Who are the seven groups to be given shade under the Throne (Arsh) on the day of Judgment? What characteristics enable this?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

According to what is narrated from Abu Hurayra, the Prophet (pbuh) said,

"Allah will give shade, to seven, on the Day when there will be no shade but His:

- A just ruler,
- a youth who has been brought up in the worship of his Lord,
- a Muslim whose heart is attached to the mosques,
- two people who love each other only for Allah's sake and who meet and part in Allah's cause only,
- a man who refuses the call of a charming woman of noble birth for illicit intercourse with her and says, “I fear Allah”,
- a person who gives charitable gifts so secretly that his left hand does not know what his right hand has given,
- a person who remembers Allah in seclusion and sheds tears."
(Bukhari, Adhan 36, Zakah 16, Riqaq 24, Hudud 19; Muslim, Zakah 91. See also Tirmidhi, Zuhd 53; Nasai, Qudat 2)

There are two expressions that need to be dwelled on in the hadith that describes seven happy people or seven nice men. One of them is the phrase "zillullah = Allah's shade". Since Allah does not have a shadow, what is meant by it is honoring just like the Kaaba being called "Baytullah = Allah's house" or the shade of His Throne (Arsh) or security provided by Allah. As a matter of fact, in some versions of the hadith, the following is stated clearly: "Allah will house them in the shade of His throne." It is stated by those expressions that Allah will protect those slaves of Him from troubles with His mercy.

On the other hand, the people to be given shade by Allah are not only those seven people. For, some other people with important qualifications are mentioned in other hadiths: For instance, the following hadith is one of them: “He who gives time to one who is financially hard up in the payment of debt or writes off his debt, Allah will provide him His shadow on the Day of Judgment when there will be no shade but His.” (see Muslim, Zuhd 74, Tirmidhi, Buyu' 67; Ibn Majah, Sadaqat 14)

That seven people are mentioned in this hadith does not deprive other lucky people mentioned in other narrations of this happiness.

Before describing those seven groups of people separately, it will be appropriate to indicate something. When the qualities of the people who are stated to have been guarded by Allah are viewed, it is understood that each one faced great difficulties, that they succeeded in overcoming difficulties of almost the same degree and that they put up a noble fight despite several internal and external obstacles. That is, their common quality is their heroism based on love. Their rewards will be based on it: To be under divine protection in the horrible environment of the Day of Judgment. 

Let us know about those seven nice people informed by the hadith one by one in short:

A just ruler. He is a person that rules the Muslims. The Muslims are under his guardianship, in other words, his shade, in the world. Therefore, his reward in the hereafter will be to be under divine protection in accordance with what he did in the world. A just president is superior to others; therefore, he is mentioned in the first place. His protection includes all of the others.

A youth who has been brought up in the worship of Allah. A young person who spends his youth in a religious line by performing prayers and worshipping protects his soul from opposing Allah's orders and resists his desires, lustful feelings and the wishes that are difficult to control by worshipping Allah. This is the evidence of his deep respect to Allah. For, it is a great virtue to obey Allah’s orders and to keep away from sins. If it is done in youth, it is beyond appreciation.  

A Muslim whose heart is attached to the mosques with love. A person who is always interested in mosques as if his heart is a candle hanging on the wall of the mosque, who attends the mosque regularly, who loves going to and being in the mosque shows his perpetual love of his Lord by being interested in mosques, which are houses of Allah. He will be housed in the shade of the Throne in the hereafter in return.

Two people who love each other only for Allah's sake and who meet and part in Allah's cause only. Two people who love each other only for Allah's sake, who have no other purpose, who part for Allah's sake, that is, who preserve the love of Allah both when they are together and when they are away from each other virtually protect each other from opposing Allah’s orders. For, a believer is the mirror of another believer. This mutual love for Allah and helping each other in this friendship will be rewarded by being put under divine protection in the hereafter. In that case, we need to be careful about our love and the people we love from this point of view.

A man who refuses the call of a charming woman of noble birth for illicit intercourse with her and says, “I fear Allah.” A man who does not accept such an invitation and who protects his soul from it by saying silently or aloud, "I am afraid of opposing Allah's order or His penalty and wrath" performs a real act of chivalry. His reward in the hereafter will be to be saved from troubles in accordance with the glad tiding "He who fears Allah is saved." This issue is more important than ever today because illegitimate relationship between men and women are tried to be popularized through mass media. 

A person who gives charitable gifts so secretly that his left hand does not know what his right hand has given. He who gives charitable gifts, who does favors secretly and who tries to keep away from show-off regards the consent of Allah superior to everything. The reward for this is being revealed in the hereafter by receiving divine protection. This is something to envy.

A person who remembers Allah in seclusion and sheds tears. A person who remembers Allah and sheds tears of love in places away from people is regarded to have reached a state of worshipping that cannot be achieved by many people. The reward for this sincere and secret worshipping is being rewarded in front of everybody by receiving divine protection. Who does not want such a reward? (see Peygamberimizden (s.a.v) Hayat Ölçüleri, Riyazü's sâlihîn Tercümesi ve Şerhi, Heyet, Erkam Yayınları, hadith no: 450)

All of the issues that are mentioned above are really important in terms of human will; some of them are very hard to do and others are traps that can tackle the soul. If man gets rid of one of those traps, it is possible for him to encounter another one any time. One can get rid of those mortal traps and fulfill those hard responsibilities that strain his power only through Allah’s protection and help; to act in accordance with his will and to have a very close relationship with Allah are the most acceptable means of attaining that help and protection.

Thus, the hadith of the Prophet (pbuh) above shows us a group of conscientious people from the congregation of blessed people that have shown their power of connection with Allah, that have been looked for in utopia for a long time and that have not been found; in addition, it fills us with enthusiasm and boost our hearts to be like them. 

Yes, on that day, when the sun replaces the clouds and scorches everywhere, brains boil and people sweat buckets, reasons are no longer valid and everything is against man, there will and can be no shade except the shade of protection and help by Allah Almighty.

It does not matter whether this shade is the shade of the Throne or something else; what matters is the system that we know will change, criteria will be upside down and the earth and the sky will undergo changes.

It is certain that nobody will be able to support anybody, and guardianship and favoritism will be of no use. Who can protect whom on that day, when people will stop speaking, everybody will undergo extreme troubles, everybody will feel dizzy and will be unable to see clearly?

Yes, there is only one shelter on that day: The shade of Allah’s protection. The following people will benefit from that shade:

- A leader and president who is aware of his responsibility in the world and who represents the truth, justice and true path with the trusts he undertook.

- A young person who devotes himself to worshipping Allah Almighty in a period when his lust is at the peak despite his bodily desires.

- A person whose desire of worshipping surpasses his bodily desires and whose heart is attached to mosques.

- Two people who love each other for Allah, who come together and leave for Allah’s sake and who render the consent and love of Allah Almighty their priority. 

- A person who leads his life in the line of “makhafatullah” and “mahabetullah” (fear of Allah), acts sensitively to preserve his chastity and innocence, is resistant against his lustful desires and rejects the bad suggestions of his soul by saying “I fear Allah”.

- A sincere and generous person who saves his money and gives it away for the sake of Allah as a symbol of his loyalty in such a secret way that he tries to hide what he gives with his right hand from his left side.

- The people of heart who meditate and contemplate when they are alone, who shed tears to express their feelings, who take their willpower from Allah and who eliminate the desires of sin and disobedience with that willpower that is like a breakwater.

Yes, as it is stated in other hadiths, along with expressing the rewards in the hereafter, this hadith shows a cross section of an ideal community, draws the framework of becoming a perfect nation and shows people the principles that will take to such a community with the following descriptions: a judge who judges justly enjoys the treats of Allah Almighty in the hereafter on luminous pulpits (Muslim, Imara, 18; Nasai, Qudat, 1; Musnad, 2/159); a young person who spends his youth by worshipping Allah Almighty attains His consent; a person who spends his life within the triangles of the mosque, his house and his work receives divine protection; people who view the universe as a cradle of brotherhood and spend their lives by loving and being loved for Allah are rewarded with divine love in the hereafter; a person fears Allah in the world becomes safe in the hereafter; a person who does charity in loyalty receives indescribable rewards from The Loyal One; a person who serves as a model to people when he is in the community and sheds tear when he is alone in the presence of Allah attains what he expects by overcoming all obstacles.   

We think it is not necessary to say again that writing about such a deep issue that can be explained by volumes of books in a few paragraphs is like describing an ocean as a drop of water. 

Accordingly:

1. Allah becomes pleased with the deeds of His slaves that aim His consent only; He takes them under His protection in a place where it is impossible to receive help from anybody else.

2. The qualities and deeds of the seven group of people are high quality deeds to be taken as models.

3. A high virtue, to love for Allah, underlies every good and acceptable deed.

4. It is necessary to keep hearts alive with love of Allah, the feeling of loving for Allah and hating for Allah.

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