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Abhorrence of Self-Praise

Another similar hateful trait is self-praise. In religion it has been condemned and prohibited.

Allah the Most High said: “Have you not considered those who attribute purity to themselves? Nay, Allah purifies whom He pleases; and they shall not be wronged the husk of a date-stone.”

He also said: “He knows you best when He brings you forth from the earth and when you are embryos in the wombs of your mothers; therefore do not attribute purity to your souls; He knows him best who guards (against evil).”

He also said: “And as for the favour of your Lord, do announce (it).”

About the second ayat mentioned above, Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (a.s.) said: “Nobody among you should boast about excessiveness in praying, fasting, almsgiving and doing other religious duties. For Allah knows him best who guards (against evil).”

When Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq (a.s.) was asked about it, he (a.s.) answered: “It is to say: ‘I have prayed, fasted, etc. in supererogation.”

He (a.s.) was asked: ‘Is it permitted for man to speak of his excellence?’ He (a.s.) answered: “Yes, when it is necessary. Do you not remember what the prophet Yusuf (Joseph) (a.s.) said to Pharaoh: ‘Place me (in authority) over the treasures of the land, surely I am a good keeper, knowing well,’1 and what the prophet Hud (a.s.) said to his people: ‘I am a faithful adviser to you?’”2

  • 1. The Qur’an: 12:55.
  • 2. The Qur’an 7: 68.

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