I'la' al-Sunan Zafar Usmani

Slave to Money…Zafar Usmani

I‘la’ al-Sunan:

“The Slave to Dirhams and Dinars…”


‘Allama Zafar Usmani (Allah have mercy on him) comments on the hadith, “Wretched is the slave to dirhams and dinars:”[1] “…what is meant by ‘slave of the dinars and dirhams’ is he who has been imprisoned by the world and its demands and so has become like a slave in it and the world disposes of him like a slave owner does.’ Whoever is a slave to his whims and desires is not truthful to the statement, {You alone we worship and You alone we ask for help}.[2] Restraining one’s desires, avarice and greed are the first steps of the renunciationists (zahidin) and the noble Sufis are the most concerned people regarding this. Whoever does restrain his desires, he will be in the world like a stranger or mere passer-by…”[3]



[1] One should not incline towards the world but renounce it.[4]

[2] One should be in the world like a traveller or passer-by.[5]

[3] One must leave of the world what does not have added value for the Hereafter.[6]

[4] One must fully remember who his Real Master is.

[5] One must restrain his desires (hawa), avarice (hirs) and greed (tam‘).[7]



[1] Bukhari, Sahih (#2887) and Ibn Majah, Sunan (#4116). The description “slave of the dirham and dinar” is a metonymical expression (kinaya), i.e. it is a figurative reference to how addicted, obsessed and humiliated a person is once they are trapped by money. For an example of kinaya with references, see: https://daralnicosia.wordpress.com/2013/12/16/lord-of-the-east-and-west-a-tafsir-of-baqara-verse-115/

[2] See Q. 1:4.

[3] Usmani, I‘la’ al-Sunan, 18:451-452.

[4] al-Qari, Mirqat al-Mafatih, 9:125. See also al-Qushyari’s Risala and its quotes on zuhd, pp.134-138 (= Knysh translation). For the dangers of the dunya, see: https://daralnicosia.wordpress.com/2011/05/04/the-dangers-of-the-dunya/

[5] al-Qari, Mirqat al-Mafatih, 9:525-126.

[6] al-Qari, Mirqat al-Mafatih, 8:585.

[7] On curbing desires, see al-Qushayri, Risala, pp.157-161.


2 thoughts on “Slave to Money…Zafar Usmani

  1. Pingback: Islamic Pictures and Quotes 25 More - Top Islamic Blog!

  2. Pingback: Wretched is the slave to Dirhams and Dinars. -Bukhari | A Striving Muslimah's Blog

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