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Chapter 4.2. The Deception of Satan

Many of those claiming inner knowledge speak about it, limit themselves to it, and condemn outer knowledge, namely, [the study of] the Sharia, legal rulings, and matters concerning the lawful and the unlawful. And they defame its people, saying that they are veiled and are people of superficialities. This irresponsible attitude engenders vilification of the pure Sharia and the righteous deeds that the prophets brought, encouraged, and fostered.

Some of them go so far as to absolve themselves of the need to perform acts of worship, claiming that worship is for the masses. They claim that one who has attained [nearness to] Allah has no need for worship; in fact, such rituals are considered a veil for him. Junayd and others have said concerning such people, ''What they have attained is only Hellfire." This claim [that adherence to Sharia is unnecessary] is from the greatest treachery and deception of Satan [Iblis] towards those people. He will continue to play with them until he causes them to apostatize from Islam.

Among this group of deceived scholars are those who imagine that inner knowledge is not received from the lamp of prophethood nor from the Quran and the Sunnah, but that it issues from person­al impulses and divine inspiration. They entertain malicious thoughts towards the perfect Sharia, thinking that it hasn't come with the sort of knowledge that rectifies hearts and draws people near to Allah, the Knower of the Unseen. This attitude ultimately produces in them a total rejection of what the Messenger of Allah brought in this regard and leads them to talk about spiritual matters on the basis of conjecture and fancy. They are astray, and they lead others astray.