أَشَدُّ الذُّنُوبِ مَا اسْتَخَفَّ بِهِ صَاحِبُهُ۔

The worst sin is that which the committer takes lightly.



The worst sin is that which the committer takes lightly.

— Imam Ali a.s.
(Nahj al-Balagha — Peak of Eloquence: Hadith #477)

Personal Reflection

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. Praise be to Allah, the Lord of all the worlds. May peace and blessings be upon our beloved Prophet Muhammad (), his pure progeny, and his noble companions.

The provided Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) states,

The worst sin is that which the committer takes lightly.

This beautiful saying highlights the severity of a sin when it is committed without any sense of remorse or understanding of its consequences. Let us delve into the exegesis of this Hadith in light of the Quran.

The word (ashaddu) "أَشَدُّ" in the Hadith means "the worst" or "the most severe." It emphasizes the gravity and seriousness of the sin being referred to. The word (dhunub) "ذُّنُوبِ" means "sins" or "transgressions." It encompasses all actions or behaviors that go against the commandments of Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ). The word (istakhaffa) "اِسْتَخَفَّ" means "to take lightly" or "to underestimate." It signifies the attitude of the sinner towards their transgressions, where they do not consider the magnitude of their actions.

The Quran provides us with numerous verses that emphasize the seriousness of sins and the importance of taking them seriously. Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) says in Surah Al-Imran (3:135),

And those who, when they commit an immorality or wrong themselves, remember Allah and seek forgiveness for their sins - and who can forgive sins except Allah? - and [who] do not persist in what they have done while they know.

This verse highlights the significance of seeking forgiveness and not persisting in sinful actions once they are realized.

Furthermore, in Surah Al-Qasas (28:77), Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) says,

But seek, through that which Allah has given you, the home of the Hereafter; and [yet], do not forget your share of the world. And do good as Allah has done good to you. And desire not corruption in the land. Indeed, Allah does not like corrupters.

This verse reminds us of the importance of not forgetting our share of the worldly life while striving for the Hereafter. It warns against falling into corruption and sin, as it goes against the will of Allah.

Imam Ali's (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) statement serves as a reminder for Muslims to reflect upon their actions and not trivialize their sins. When a person takes a sin lightly, they fail to recognize the harm they are causing to themselves and others. They may become desensitized to the consequences of their actions, leading to a continuous cycle of sinning without remorse.

For example, if a person engages in backbiting and gossip, they may initially consider it a minor offense. However, if they continue to engage in this behavior without acknowledging its gravity, it can lead to the destruction of relationships, spreading of falsehoods, and the erosion of trust within the community. By taking the sin lightly, they fail to realize the negative impact it has on their own spiritual well-being and the harmony of society.

Moreover, when a person takes a sin lightly, they may become complacent and continue to commit the same sin repeatedly. This can lead to a gradual decline in their faith and distance them from the path of righteousness. By underestimating the severity of their actions, they may lose sight of the importance of seeking forgiveness and making amends.

In conclusion, Imam Ali's (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) Hadith serves as a powerful reminder for Muslims to be conscious of their actions and not to trivialize their sins. By recognizing the gravity of our transgressions and seeking forgiveness, we can strive towards spiritual growth and maintain a strong connection with Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ). May Allah guide us all to the straight path and protect us from falling into the trap of taking our sins lightly.

. : . (Readers are advised to verify the sources mentioned above, and to independently research for an accurate understanding of Hadith. Remember, personal research and seeking guidance from scholars are essential in gaining a better insight. Please, do contact us if you find any wrong citations or explanations.)

Join our community to daily receive one short Hadith of Imam Ali a.s on your device.