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Sunday Open Thread | March 28, 2010 “I Don’t Care”


Bismillah hir Rahman nir Raheem.  As salamu alaykum wa Rahmat Allahi wa Barakatuhu.  The difference between caring and not caring is more than just three letters.

For me caring is helping your brother or sister in need without seeking something in return, except for the pleasure of Allah.  Caring is doing something with ihsaan when the only One who sees you is Allah.  Caring is not unique to Islam, but its absence is part of the weakness of a person’s Islam.

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On the other hand, “I don’t care” is the declaration of a child, usually at a time of selfishness or ingratitude, maybe at a time of hurt.  It requires closing oneself off to consequences, and only children (or the insane) can excusably ignore consequences.  Adults who do not care are all too common, though, and sadly there are Muslims who vie with non-Muslims in that, too.

So tell me, what does caring mean to you?

Please make dua for the shifa of our brother Youssef who has been posting interesting Open Threads for some time now and is not feeling well today, as well as for all the Muslims all over the world who are and have been ill.  May Allah strengthen their health, make their discomforts purification for them, and reward them their sabr.

Keep supporting MuslimMatters for the sake of Allah

Alhamdulillah, we're at over 850 supporters. Help us get to 900 supporters this month. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

Bismillah walhamdolillah. May Allah accept my repentance and yours. I am an attorney, a stepfather, a husband, a son, and a Muslim. Studying Islam is a means, reflecting what I have learned is a must, and to Allah is the inevitable return. If you would like my help, know that Allah is the source of all aid. If you would like to contact me, try tariqnisarahmed at Gmail, LinkedIn, Twitter, or add me as a friend on Facebook.



  1. Abed

    March 28, 2010 at 4:02 AM

    found the need to reflect on this.

    Exercises of the heart:
    -that bring you closer to loving for others what you love for yourself,
    -that bring you closer to moderation in ihsaan, i.e. that ihsaan is not perfectionism but like all things with Islam it is a balance,
    -that you find balance between taking care of yourself and providing relief (effort) for others near & distant
    -that when you recite the 5th verse of al-Fatiha you really do mean “we.”
    -that brings us closer to Allah, if we wish to be forgiven, if we wish to be further recipient of His Mercy (who would want to part with it?), then this should be reflected in our mannerisms, dealings, relations w/ others.

    Our Lord is not just the best and the Most High for us individually. I have no doubt that shining light on how great He is for others will make us hold Him in higher and higher regard. However, if we cut ourselves off from this (caring about others) though it changes nothing about Allah, subhana wa ta’ala, we perhaps are cutting ourselves off from a whole dimension of His Mercy not in reception per se but in the degree and kind of sincerity in our own ‘ibadah. What heart can be better than that which is full of thoughts and love for its Creator? And just the thought of “cutting off” in general…what could be worse than a sealed heart? Audhubillah.

    From a facebook group:
    Abdullah ibn Mas’ud narrated that Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said, “Ask Allah for some of His bounty, for Allah likes to be asked, and the most excellent worship is expectation of relief.”

    From Maariful Qur’an on the first verses of Surah Yusuf
    “And it appears in Hadith that Allah Ta’ala said: (Arabic) that is, ‘I
    am with the opinion of My servant about Me.’ In other words, ‘whatever
    a servant of Mine believes Me to be, just that I become for him.’
    when one ends up believing that misfortune is going to come from Allah
    Taaii, then, true to the customary practice of Allah, the coming of that
    misfortune becomes due against him.”

    So to sum I think caring for me is different from just concern as it has an implied effect if possible, i.e. “taking care of.” It is a means of acquiring what’s best for us whether or not we know it (not even from an Islamic view, just man as a social creature, we need other people). (in Islam) There is always a balance between proper belief and righteous deeds. If caring is a part of belief then it will have its companion actions. I can’t think of what the counterpart to not caring is. Allah takes care of us all. Not just one of us, but all of us. He sent Prophets to not just one person, but all people. Prophets in turn did not just take care in delivering their message, performing their duties to just one person and neglect others as they desired (just now the instance of the blind man came to mind), but to their designated group. Not only are we (the entirety of mankind) that last designated group but caring then is just one way of emulating the best of men in perhaps one of the best of ways, i.e. if “Caring is not unique to Islam,” then it does not require Islamic knowledge to act upon, if done it is simultaneously natural and sincere.

    i’m glad i came here. ameen to the du’aa (i’m sick, too! haha). being ill has its benefits. surprisingly enough i dont think we can ever learn enough from health issues. i was thinking of the possible benefits of getting sick (asides from expiation) at this time as im going to be traveling soon. I realized a few things. I was worried that i would not be well-received/taken care of. So instead of that becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy perhaps I thought lowly of Allah unintentionally and am being cleansed of it, also in exchange now whoever receives me will up the ante. Also when you are ill you are not as anxious. Also when you are being taken care of you are not as anxious. The original anxieties are relieved and replaced with an increase in dedication/discipline, a want to return favors to care-takers, and so while ill and when healing and when healed hopefully one becomes a better person and a better ‘abd. truly no hardship shall overcome 2 eases. (can a person be an ease for a hardship i wonder?) =D Of course as with all things Allah spoke the truth!

    in closing I was once told by my eldest aunt in reaction to that very phrase, “What kind of saying is this, ‘I don’t care!’? Only Allah can say such a thing.” SubhanAllah. perhaps not caring is a trick of shaytan that we would silence the heart and ultimately say about Allah that which we do not know. and perhaps then caring is its anti-thesis in which the heart is opened up what Allah has said. And in my limited knowledge i’ve never heard of such a thing as Allah literally saying, “I don’t care!”

    good post! it was relative. no coincidences i guess.

  2. Abed

    March 28, 2010 at 8:28 AM


    fail. forgive me —

    wa ‘alaikum assalaam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatahu.

  3. Ibn Ameen

    March 28, 2010 at 9:01 PM

    Insyallah i never stop mke a du’a every day!

    nowdays alot of peolple interprete caring by their own way, not by how Allah want shown by our
    prophet Muhammad P.B.U.H, may Allah guide us in a right path wth sbar, Ameen

  4. Wael -

    March 29, 2010 at 12:18 PM

    To me, caring means choosing a side.

    In reality, Shaytan does care. Iblis is passionate in his arrogance and hatred of humanity. He cares about destroying us and misleading us. He has chosen a side. He knows that Allah is real and is Almighty, but he defies Allah openly.

    The Prophets, the Sahabah and all righteous individuals throughout history also cared passionately. They cared about obeying and worshiping Allah, guiding us fellow humans, shedding light, conveying the message, and saving the world. They cared deeply, to the point that many of them died for their beliefs.

    The people who don’t care are the pawns in the middle. By not caring, they become unwitting tools of Shaytan, helping him to realize his evil plans. They go about blindly, chasing money, sex, consumer goods, or “fun”. They don’t care about anything meaningful, spiritual, or impacting on the world. They are puppets of Shaytan, without realizing it. That’s the consequence of not caring.

    • abu abdAllah Tariq Ahmed

      March 29, 2010 at 2:59 PM

      I suppose if caring about others and making sacrifices for others were no better than caring about one’s own agenda, then I might agree with you. Every prophet, every messenger, and every sahaba or righteous person is far above any comparison to ash Shaytan ar Rajeem.

      Shaytan’s passion is nothing but hatred and arrogance. And whereas slave after slave of Allah has risked or given his life selflessly for Allah, His Deen, and/or saving other slaves of Allah, the example of Shaytan is from the seerah: exhorting Quraysh to fight at Badr and then running away, full of his cowardice, at the sight of the army of angels.

      As for people consumed with ignorance, with idleness, or even by sin, every living man and almost every living jinn has a higher rank than Shaytan simply because they still have time to repent, and in obedience to Allah to rise even into the high levels of believers. So low does defiance of Allah render the ungrateful.

      • Wael -

        March 30, 2010 at 12:47 AM

        abu abdAllah, I don’t know if you misunderstood me, or if you are just trying to clarify what I wrote. Of course Shaytan is ranked the lowest of the low. I never intended to imply otherwise.

        You wrote, “Shaytan’s passion is nothing but hatred and arrogance.” That’s almost exactly what I said: ” Iblis is passionate in his arrogance and hatred of humanity.”

        As for the people you mentioned who consumed with ignorance, idleness, and sin, my point was simply that those people are unwittingly following Shaytan.

        • abu abdAllah Tariq Ahmed

          March 31, 2010 at 11:20 AM

          Perhaps clarification. :)

          As for the subject of “caring” — you made no distinction between purely selfish action, such as the devil’s, and selfless action, as exemplified by the righteous. The height of selfishness is not “caring” in my opinion, no matter how much action it inspires.

          As for the devil, I begrudge him not one ounce of respect. He is ar-rajeem, the rejected, despicable in every way.

          • Abdus-Sabur

            April 6, 2010 at 3:08 PM

            selfishness is caring only about one’s self-interest, not the interest of others.

  5. abu abdAllah Tariq Ahmed

    March 29, 2010 at 4:26 PM

    In the realm of things too many people care too much about: Remember all the people overjoyed at an Obama iftar? Get ready for the Obama Seder, or not: a bit more exclusive perhaps.

  6. unknown

    March 29, 2010 at 11:00 PM

    Assalamu álaikum,
    The taliban flogging here has proven to be untrue.

    Monday, March 29, 2010
    PESHAWAR: A resident of Swat, who claims to have prepared the fake video of flogging of a girl in Swat, has termed it drama and revealed that he received Rs0.5 million for doing so before the launch of military operation ‘Rah-e-Rast’.

    Before the operation ‘Rah-e-Rast’, an NGO financed preparation of fake video of flogging in which they portrayed the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) members flogging a woman. The provincial government and Malakand Commissioner Syed Muhammad Javed ordered investigations and sought report from the authorities concerned.

    After the successful operation in Malakand division, the law-enforcement agencies had arrested the children who were present in the video while a resident of Swat was apprehended by Kohat administration. The children and the arrested man revealed that the video was fake and said that it was made on the demand of Islamabad-based NGO which provided him Rs0.5 million.

    Sources revealed that woman who was flogged in the video was also arrested and she revealed that she had received Rs0.1 million while Rs50,000 were given to each child. Sources said that the NGO produced the video to defame the country’s integrity and respect.

    Sources stated that the law-enforcement agencies dispatched the report about the arrests of the culprits and proposed action against the NGO. They also said that the security agencies also apprehended the TTP workers who flogged the people. [Source = ARY News, Geo, TheNews, Nation etc etc]

    We shd be careful in believing tales.

    O ye who believe! If a wicked person comes to you with any news, ascertain the truth, lest ye harm people unwittingly, and afterwards become full of repentance for what ye have done.

  7. unknown

    March 30, 2010 at 6:26 AM

    lol, looks like my comments wont come out.

  8. mystrugglewithin

    April 13, 2010 at 10:55 PM

    “i don’t care” is what I hear (and see in the eyes) of some people when I present a shar’ee solution (& they’re trapped), whereas they tend to justify the necessity of relying on haraam means.

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