The inner state of those who deny Allahâ€™s existence and cannot stand to have His name be remembered or mentioned is considered to be the final stage of unawareness. Such people, who flounder in denial, are unloved and condemned by Allah. In addition, they have many negative and unpleasant attributes.
Deniers are rebellious, arrogant, selfish, irritable, hypocritical, and unbalanced liars who are ready to engage in any wickedness. When it is a question of their gaining an advantage, they become so overwhelmed with worldly ambition that they no longer even recognize their own father or mother. Ignoring all limits that stand in the way of getting their own way, they resort to falsity, immorality, and lawlessness to overcome all obstacles.
Their consciences are shrouded, and so they have no sense of mercy, compassion, and pity. Having no sensitivity toward those around them, they live only for themselves and to satisfy the selfish desires and passions of their egos. Their minds are so clouded by unawareness that they never think about Allah or even remember His name:
When Allah, the One and Only, is mentioned, the hearts of those who do not believe in the Hereafter shrink back, shuddering.
They deny the Hereafterâ€™s existence and, to appease their consciences and justify their behavior, disparage religion and try to draw others down the same path. They are not aware of the wickedness they commit or of the eternal punishment awaiting them:
As for those who do not believe in the Hereafter, We have made their actions appear good to them, and they wander about blindly. Such people will receive an evil punishment and will be the greatest losers in the Hereafter.
We created many of the jinn and humanity for Hell. They have hearts with which they do not understand, eyes with which they do not see, and ears with which they do not hear. Such people are like cattle. No, they are even further astray! They are the unaware.
As we see, deniers ignore the promised eternal punishment. Moreover, they are described in the Qurâ€™an as being lower than animals, because they have been engulfed by unawareness. In other words, they are happy only when eating, drinking, and enjoying themselves, for they focus only on this world and are content to remain unaware of what is really important:
They know an outward aspect of this worldâ€™s life, but are heedless of the Hereafter.
Such people think only of this worldly life, even though Allah has sent prophets and messengers, as well as holy books and believers, throughout history to warn them of the Day of Judgment, when they will have to account for themselves. They have been reminded of their sins and that these will not be forgotten on that day. They have heard what will happen to them if they do not obey Allahâ€™s commands and prohibitions, continue to ignore His advice, and do not repent of their wicked and corrupt lives: they will be rewarded with Hellâ€™s endless punishment. The only way to avoid all these is to heed His warnings and correct their attitudes, live in a way that earns His pleasure so that they will not disgrace themselves on the Day of Judgment. However, only some of them will listen:
Humanityâ€™s reckoning has drawn very close to them, yet they heedlessly turn away.
The unawareness of those who have gone astray
Some individuals do not practice Islam according to the Qurâ€™an, but according to what they have learned in their community and from their elders. In other words, they have inherited a false religious tradition from their ancestors and named it â€œIslam.â€ For this reason, even if they read the Qurâ€™an they interpret it incorrectly. They are unaware of the truth handed down in the Quâ€™ran and the sayings of our Prophet (saas), and thus cannot be considered true believers:
When they are told: â€œFollow what Allah has sent down to you,â€ they say: â€œWe are following what we found our ancestors doing.â€ What, even though their ancestors did not understand a thing and were not guided!
When they are told: â€œCome to what Allah has sent down and to the Messenger,â€ they say: â€œWhat we found our ancestors doing is enough for us.â€ What! Even if their ancestors did not know anything and were not guided!
When they are told: â€œFollow what Allah has sent down,â€ they say: â€œNo, we will follow what we found our ancestors doing.â€ What! Even if satan is calling them to the punishment of the Blazing Fire?
It is stated in the Qurâ€™an that these people do not practice the commands and prohibitions Allah prescribed in the Qurâ€™an, but those devised by their ancestors. It is obvious from the Qurâ€™an that they are heretics following satan, who is drawing them toward the eternal punishment of Hell. They associate others with Him by valuing their ancestorsâ€™ religion more than true Islam, and their own traditions more than the Qurâ€™an. As a result, satan has used their ignorance, bigotry, pride and lack of intelligence to lead them astray. In other words, their own attitudes cause them to stray from the true path and adopt a distorted ancestral religion known to them as â€œIslam.â€
This ancestral religion is very different from the Islam described in the Qurâ€™an. For example, they pray when something is bothering them or when they feel they have exhausted all other possibilities; sometimes they even pray to receive worldly favors to satisfy their egos. Even though they may know what is actually said in the Qurâ€™an about prayer, they do not really practice it. In fact, they do not give proper thanks to Allah, but only for something of importance to them. They do not have a correct view of the Qurâ€™an and therefore ignore the countless blessings that Allah has given them and for which they must thank Him.
So, although they know that Allah exists, they ignore such verses as â€œWorship Allah and do not associate anything with Himâ€ (Surat an-Nisaâ€™: 36) and fall into the sin of association. They are so unaware of reality that they think that on the Day of Judgment, when everything will be revealed, Allah will accept their claim that they never committed such a grave sin:
On the Day We gather them all together, We will ask those who associated others with Allah: â€œWhere are the partner-deities for whom you made such claims?â€ Then they will have no recourse but to say: â€œBy Allah, our Lord, We were not idolaters.â€ See how they lie against themselves and how what they invented has forsaken them!
â€¦ Turning toward Him. Fear (and respect) Him and perform (the obligatory) prayer. Do not be among the idolaters, those who split up their religion and form into sects, each faction exulting in what it has.
As these verses reveal, the fact that they happily accept the perversity of those idolaters who divide their religion into sects show just how unaware they really are. Although they know their errors and understand what is right, they refuse to accept the truth out of a strong desire to continue being guided by their own passions and desires.