الْحَجَرُ الْغَصِيبُ فِي الدَّارِ رَهْنٌ عَلَى خَرَابِهَا۔

One ill-gotten piece of stone in a house is a guarantee for its ruin.



One ill-gotten piece of stone in a house is a guarantee for its ruin.

— Imam Ali a.s.
(Nahj al-Balagha — Peak of Eloquence: Hadith #240)

Personal Reflection

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

The Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) states,

One ill-gotten piece of stone in a house is a guarantee for its ruin.

This beautiful Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) highlights the importance of integrity and righteousness in our actions. To fully understand the depth of this Hadith, let us explore the key words and their meanings.

The term "ill-gotten" refers to something acquired unlawfully or through dishonest means. It signifies any possession or wealth that is obtained through corruption, theft, or deceit. The word "stone" in this context symbolizes material possessions or wealth. It represents the physical assets and resources that one accumulates in their life.

Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) warns that even a single ill-gotten piece of stone in a house can become a guarantee for its ruin. This means that any wealth or possession acquired through unlawful means will eventually lead to the destruction of the entire household. This destruction is not limited to physical ruin but also encompasses spiritual, emotional, and social ruin.

To support this wise utterance, we find numerous verses in the Quran that emphasize the importance of honesty, integrity, and lawful earnings. Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) says in Surah Al-Baqarah, verse 188:

And do not consume one another's wealth unjustly or send it [in bribery] to the rulers in order that [they might aid] you [to] consume a portion of the wealth of the people in sin, while you know [it is unlawful].

This verse clearly prohibits the consumption of wealth acquired unjustly and warns against using bribery to gain unlawful advantages. It highlights the importance of earning and utilizing wealth in a lawful and ethical manner. By engaging in corrupt practices, one not only harms themselves but also contributes to the deterioration of society as a whole.

Furthermore, in Surah Al-Ma'idah, verse 90, Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) states:

O you who have believed, indeed, intoxicants, gambling, [sacrificing on] stone alters [to other than Allah], and divining arrows are but defilement from the work of Satan, so avoid it that you may be successful.

This verse highlights the prohibition of engaging in activities that are associated with dishonesty, deception, and corruption. It specifically mentions sacrificing on stone alters, which can be understood as a metaphor for engaging in unlawful practices for personal gain. By avoiding such actions, one can attain success and protect themselves from ruin.

Imam Ali's (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) Hadith serves as a reminder for Muslims to be mindful of their actions and the sources of their wealth. It teaches us that even a single ill-gotten possession can have far-reaching consequences, not only for ourselves but for our families and communities as well. It emphasizes the importance of upholding honesty, integrity, and righteousness in all aspects of our lives.

By adhering to the teachings of the Quran and the guidance of the Ahl al-Bayt (عَلَيْهِمُ ٱلسَّلَامُ), we can ensure that our actions are in accordance with the principles of Islam. We must strive to earn our wealth through lawful means, avoid any form of corruption or dishonesty, and contribute positively to the betterment of society. Only then can we safeguard ourselves and our households from ruin and attain true success in this world and the hereafter.

May Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) guide us all to righteousness and protect us from the temptations of ill-gotten wealth. Ameen.

. : . (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.)

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