Sayings of Imaam Sufyaan on Various Topics


1.) ‘Abdullah ibn Al-Mubaraak reported that Sufyaan Ath-Thauree said: “Beware of filling your stomachs, for doing so hardens the heart. And suppress your anger. And do not laugh too much, for laughing a great deal kills the heart.

2.) Yahyaa Ibn Yamaan related that, when Sufyaan was asked whether or not a person in debt should eat meat, he replied, “No,” meaning that having a debt can be great burden upon a person in the Hereafter and that a person in debt should therefore forsake certain life’s luxuries so that he can save up enough money to repay his debt.

3.) Khalf ib Tameem reported that he heard Sufyaan say, “The vision of one’s eyes is meant for this world, and the vision of one’s heart is meant for the hereafter. When a man looks with his eyes, he benefits naught. It is when he looks with his heart that he benefits.

4.) ‘Abdul-‘Azeez ibn Abu ‘Uthmaan reproted that Sufyaan Ath-Thauree (may Allaah have mercy on him) said, “Live moderately. Beware of imitating arrogant people. And in your food, drink, clothing, and means of conveyance, seek out that which is not specifically purchased by profligate and extravagant spenders. And when you seek out advice, let the people you go for advice be the people of piety – people who fear Allah (the Possessor of might and majesty) and who are trustworthy.”

5.) Sufyaan said, “It used to be said: “Fear being put to trial by a worshipper who is ignorant and by the scholar who is evil, for the trials of these two kinds of people are a severe test for those who are weak.”

6.) Wakee’ reported that he heard Sufyaan say, “Were certainty of faith to become firmly fixed in the hearts of people, each person would become excitedly hopeful or extremely fearful – hopeful for (rewards from) Allah, the Possessor of might and majesty, or fearful of the Hellfire.

7.) Sufyaan Ath-Thauree said, “True certainty of faith means not to accuse your Lord of any of the things that befall you.”

8.) Ahmad Ibn Younus reported that someone asked Sufyaan Ath-Thauree, “How did you become acquainted with your Lord?” he responded, “I became acquainted with Him when I noticed that I lost my determination and when an endeavor of mine ended in naught.” This perhaps means: It was through my weakness and inability that I came to know and appreciate His almightiness and infinite power.

9.) Al-Firyabee reported that Sufyaan Ath-Thauree said, “The only situation which I feel is analogous to the departure of a believer from this world is the departure of a baby from its mother’s womb, from the gloominess (inside of its mother’s womb) to the spirit (and freshness) of the world.”

10.) Sufyaan Ath-Thauree said, “It has been conveyed to me (in a Qudsee Hadeeth) that Allah, the Possessor of Might and Majesty, says, “When a scholar prefers this world (to the Hereafter), the least I do to him is deprive him of the sweetness (and pleasure) of privately invoking Me in his heart.”

11.) ‘Abdu-rahmaan ibn ‘Abdullah Al-Basree reported that a man said to Sufyaan, “Advice me.” Sufyaan said, “Work for this world in proportion to the time you will stay in it (which does not amount to many years). And work for the Hereafter in proportion to the time you will stay in it (for eternity)- and peace (be upon you).”

12.) Yousuf Ibn Asbaat related that he once heard Sufyaan Ath-Thauree say, “In our view, a person does not have an understanding of the religion until he thinks of a hardship as a blessing, and comfort and luxury as being a hardship.”

13.) Sufyaan Ath-Thauree once said to some of his students, “Do you know what the meaning of La Haula Wa-la Quwwata Illa Billaah (which translates into English as: “There is neither power not might except with Allah)?” He then said, “It means: (O Allah) none can give except what you have given, and none can preserve anything other than what you preserve.”

14.) Ibn Dawood related that he heard Sufyaan say, “If you want your marriage proposal to be accepted, then gift to the mother (of the girl with whom you wish to get married).”

15.) Wakee’ reported that Sufyaan said, “Zuhd (desiring little from this world because of one’s preoccupation with the Hereafter) means not having long-term hopes for this world, and it does not mean eating coarse food and wearing a tattered robe.”

16.) yahyaa ibn Yamaan related that he heard Sufyaan Ath-Thauree say, “Verily, the examples of this world are a loaf of bread over which some honey is spread: a fly passes over it and has its wing cut off (being caught in the stickiness of the honey); and a loaf of dry bread: a fly passes over it and is unable to take anything from it.”

17.)  Yahyaa ibn Yamaan also reported that he heard Sufyaan Ath-Thauree say, “Evil deeds are the disease, and the scholars are the cure. Now, if scholars become corrupt, who will cure the disease?”

18.) ‘Abdullah ibn Dawood reported that Sufyaan Ath-Thauree said, “Knowledge is sought after only so that once can use it to fear Allah (and ward of hiss punishment); it is in this context that knowledge is deemed a superior thing; otherwise, it is like all other things. So knowledge is considered to be superior over all things because it is meant to be used for the purpose of fearing Allah (and warding off His punishment).”

19.) hafs ibn Ghayyaath related that he heard Sufyaan Ath- Thauree say, “If you see a man doing something which (scholars) have differed (i.e., there is more than one scholarly view in the matter), and if you are of another view (i.e. if you feel that what he is doing is disliked or prohibited), do not forbid or prevent him from doing it.”

20.) Sufyaan Ath-thauree said, “A scholar is like a doctor: He place his medicine over the are that is affected by the disease.”

21.) ‘Abdul-‘Azeez Al-Qurashee related that he heard Sufyaan say, “Practice Zuhd (seeking little from this world out of desire for the rewards of the Hereafter), for Allah will make you see the defects of this world, Practice Al-Wara (fearing Allah to the degree that one forsake dubious certain lawful things for the fear that they will lead to what is prohibited) and Allah will make your accountability (on the Day of Resurrection) easier for you. And when you are in doubt about something (about whether it is lawful or not), leave it and instead go after something regarding which you have doubts (as to its lawfulness). For when you leave what is doubtful and stick to what you are sure about, you will remain safe in your religion.”

22.) Speaking about those who are afflicted with calamities in this world, Imaan Sufyaan (may Allah have mercy on him) said, “They are not harmed by what they are afflicted with in this world; Allah will compensate them for all of their hardships with Paradise.”

23.) Qubaish related that he heard Sufyaan say, “Love people in proportion to the (good) deeds they perform. Become humble and flexible when you are invited to perform a good deed, and become rigid and defiant when you are invited to commit a sin”

24.) Salamah ibn Ghaffaar reported that Sufyaan said, “If you want to know the true value of this world, look at the value (and character) of those people who have it (i.e., of those people who are rich and prosperous).”

25.) Ahmad ibn ‘Abdullah ibn Younus said, “I cannot count the number of times I heard Sufyaan Ath-Thauree say, O Allah, save (me), save (me). O Allah, save us from it (the world and its temptations), so that we come out of this world to something that is better. O Allah , bless us with safety in this world and the Hereafter.”

[Transcribed from: The Biography of Sufyaan Ath-Thauree|Pages 152-158|Compiled by: Salaahud-Deen ibn Alee ibn Abdul-Maujood|Translated by: Faisal ibn Muhammad Shafeeq|Edited by: Dr. Abdul Ahad (Alig.)|Published by: Darussalam 2005]

About Umm Abdulazeez

"I am a Muslim who is upon the Qur'aan and the Sunnah and upon the methodology of the Salaf As-Saalih (Pious Predecessors). And that can be said in short by saying, 'I am a Salafee' " [Shaykh Al-Albaanee رحمه الله] ________ Sufyaan Ath-Thawree (rahimahullaah) said: “Indeed knowledge should only be learned for the purpose of fearing Allaah. Indeed, knowledge has been given virtue over other than it because with it Allaah is feared.” [Jaam'i Bayaan al-'Ilm wa Fadlihi by Imaam Ibn Abdil-Barr (rahimahullaah)]
This entry was posted in Ahkira|Hereafter, Quotes|Wisdom, Sufyaan at-Thawree [Sufyaan bin Saeed ath-Thawree (161 A.H.)]. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Sayings of Imaam Sufyaan on Various Topics

  1. Jazakillah khair sis for this. Mashallah all very insightful- May Allah be pleased with him.

  2. Wa iyyaaki, yeah i have this Sufyaan Ath-Thauree (rahimahullaah) biography book, i wanted to copy all those advices and quotes in it but sometimes I’m very slow typing specially if my 10 mos. old baby is in my lap i couldn’t finish a single thing :D cause it’s not only me who is typing. InshaAllaah I’ll try completing all his letters of admonitions. :) Barakallaahu feeki. Hayakillaah.

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