Mawlana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi رحمة الله عليه, a great a scholar of the Indian subcontinent who died in 1905, wrote an article in which he listed the attributes and characteristics that are manifested in those who reach the rank of ihsaan. We should work towards these attributes which are:
1. To adopt humbleness and regard oneself as inferior.
2. To show kindness to creation and to tolerate inconvenience and hurt from the rest of creation.
3. To conduct oneself with mercy and compassion and to abandon anger and rage.
4. To be sympathetic and to give priority to the rights of Allah’s creation above one’s own.
5. To be generous.
6. To overlook the wrongs of others and to forgive and forget.
7. To always have a pleasant face.
8. Softness in one’s character.
9. To avoid affectation and to behave naturally (i.e. avoid pretence).
10. To spend moderately.
11. Reliance upon Allah سبحانه وتعالى
12. Contentment with little from Allah سبحانه وتعالى (i.e. few worldly possessions).
13. Piety and taqwa.
14. To avoid arguments and retaliation.
15. To abstain from envy and malice.
16. To fulfil one’s promises.
17. To exercise forbearance and patience.
18. To do things calmly.
19. To detach oneself from those who distract you from Allah سبحانه وتعالى
20. To show gratitude to Allah سبحانه وتعالى
21. To spend for the benefit of the creation.
22. To feel shame in front of Allah سبحانه وتعالى out of His respect and fear.
Tazkiya is all of good character and manners ( akhlaaq) and the one on the path of tazkiya should adorn his zaahir (outer self) and his baatin (inner self).
[This short excerpt is based on a brothers’ majlis (gathering for spiritual training) held by Shaykh Abu Yusuf Riyadh ul Haq on 4th September 1999].