The signs of the fear of Allah

Question: What are the signs of the fear of Allah?
The root cause of the fear of Allah is ‘ilm (knowledge) and ma’rifa(knowing Allah). The people of ‘ilm and ma’rifa see their own imperfections, their sins, and their defects in acts of worship. When they compare these with the blessings Allahu ta’âlâ has bestowed upon them, they feel ashamed of their actions and deeds. Thus, they develop a sense of fear. A hadîth-i sharîf declares:
(The source of all kinds of hikmah is the fear of Allah.) [Tabarânî]

The word hikmah has several meanings, such as useful knowledge, science and art, and spiritual knowledge. Then a person who fears Allah and so avoids harâm and performs acts of worship is understood to be a wise person possessing hikmah“The wisest of you is the one who fears Allah most,” was declared in a hadîth-i sharîf. (Ibni Muhbar)

As the fear of Allah is a fear that arises from the anxiety of losing the Beloved, so it also arises from the fear of incurring disasters as a result of disobeying Him. Allahu ta’âlâ purports in the Qur’ân al-karîm:
(Fear Allah, so that you can attain to salvation.) [Sûrat-u Âl-i ‘Imrân, 200]

(Only ‘ulamâ fear Allah.) [Sûrat-u Fâtir, 28]

(The most honorable among you is the one who fears Allah most.) [Sûrat-ul-Hujurât, 13]

The existence of the fear of Allah manifests itself through seven things [through the tongue, through the heart, through eyes, through the stomach, through hands, through feet, and through acts of worship]:
1. Through the tongue: The tongue does not tell a lie. It is declared in hadîth-i sharîfs:
(Avoid lying, for a lie leads a person to a sin. A sin, in turn, drags a person to Hell.) [Bukhârî]

(One of the signs of hypocrisy is to lie.) [Bukhârî]

(Lying is contrary to îmân.) [Bayhaqî]

(Every disposition may exist in a Believer. Only mendacity and perfidy do not exist in him.) [Bazzar]

(Shame on those who tell lies in order to amuse people.) [Abû Dâwud]

Also, the tongue of a person who fears Allah does not backbite, as it does not tell a lie. Backbiting (ghiybat), which is a grave sin, causes decrease in one’s thawâb and causes others’ sins to be added to the backbiter’s sins. Some hadîth-i sharîfs declare:
(Backbiting weakens one’s îmân and annihilates it in the end.)[Isfahânî]

(Backbiting is worse than eating carrion.) [I. Hibbân]

(If the person criticized (behind his back) possesses the fault ascribed to him, then ghiybat has been committed. Otherwise it is a case of slander.) [Muslim]

(On the Day of Judgement, a person will look at his reward-book. He will say, “I performed such and such acts of worship, but they are not recorded in the page.” He will be answered, “They have been erased from your book and transferred to the books of people you backbit.) [Isfahânî]

(The supplication of a backbiter is not accepted.) [Shir’a]

Those who fear Allah do not engage in idle talk, either. It is stated in hadîth-i sharîfs:
(On the Day of Judgement, the one who has the most sins is the one who talks idly.) [Abû Nasr]

(A person’s engaging in useless talk and idling his time away is a symptom of Allahu ta’âlâ’s not loving him.) [Maktûbat-i Rabbânî]

When the mother of a young man who became a martyr said, “My son, let Paradise be glad tidings to you,” our master Rasûlullah stated,“How do you know? Maybe, he used to say useless things”(Tirmudhî).

2. Through the heart: The heart has been purged of vices, such as hatred, jealousy, and so on.

3. Through eyes: Eyes do not look at harâm. A pertinent hadîth-i sharîf declares: “Looking at harâm is one arrow from Shaitân’s poisonous arrows. Allahu ta’âlâ bestows such an îmân upon a person who does not look at harâm out of fear of Allah that he feels its taste in his heart” (Hâkim).

They look at everything in the universe in order to take a lesson. Hadrat ‘Îsâ stated, “The one whose speech is a mention (of Allah), whose silence is contemplation, and whose glances take a lesson is like me.”

4. Through the stomach: The stomach keeps away from harâmmorsels. A hadîth-i sharîf communicates, “The good deeds of a person who has eaten one morsel of harâm food are not accepted for 40 days” (Tabarânî).

5. Through hands: Such people do not extend their hands to harâm.

6. Through feet: Feet do not walk to the places where sins are committed.

7. Through acts of worship: Such people hold fast to ikhlâs [Allah’s good pleasure] and avoid ostentation.

Those who fear Allahu ta’âlâ try strictly to carry out His commands and to abstain from His prohibitions. They do not harm anybody. They show patience toward those who harm them. They repent for their faults. They do not wrong anybody in trade. They respect people of knowledge and good morals. They like their friends, and their friends like them. They do not talk behind anybody’s back. They never treat anybody harshly. They wish property and rank in order that they may do favors to everybody by means of them. They are not arrogant. Thinking that Allahu ta’âlâ sees and knows every moment, they never commit evil. In short, those who fear Allah are useful to their country and countrymen.