Divisions in Actions of the Limbs

People are of three kinds in regards to the action of their limbs:

  1. Those whose limbs are engaged in the service of their Lord, to fulfil the purpose for which they are created. They are successful ‘merchants’ who have made Allah’s obedience their trade and livelihood, from which they yield the greatest profits. Salah has been prescribed in such a manner, that the entire body follows the lead of the heart – so that each limb practices its individual act of worship demonstrating its servitude to Allah. These are the category of people who have realised the grace of Allah upon them and have understood the true purpose behind the creation of their limbs, and therefore they dedicate their limbs to worshipping their Lord, all the while safeguarding them from being involved in matters that may displease Him – so they fulfil the duties and responsibilities of their servitude to Allah.
  2. Those who utilise their limbs in pursuit of that they have been created for, and dedicate them to committing sins and disobeying Allah. They are the ones whose endeavours fail and whose trade is never successful – and because of that, they deserve Allah’s punishment and Wrath and are precluded from receiving His Pleasure and Reward.
  3. Those who completely suspend their limbs from engaging in any kind of productive activity; they neither serve the purpose for which they were created nor use them in obtaining the good of this worldly life, due to their ignorance and idleness. This group is even worse than the previous group, because mankind is created to worship and obey and not for incapacity and impotence. In fact, the most despised people to Allah are the useless type who are neither productive in this life nor do they endeavour to have a share in the Hereafter – they are condemned in every sense. If a person is condemned when his endeavours is dedicated for this life only, then he will without doubt be more condemned and be a greater failure when his endeavours are dedicated neither for this life nor for his Hereafter.

Inner Dimensions of the Prayer by Ibn Qayyim Al-Jawziyyah Page 21-22