Hadeeth Thirty Two: Devotion to the Religion of Islaam
From Ka‘b ibn Maalik al-Ansaaree (radiyallaahu ‘anhu)
who said that Allaah's Messenger () said:
Two hungry wolves let loose amongst sheep
will not cause more harm to them than a person’s craving after wealth and status will do to his Religion.
So this is a very great example struck by the Prophet () showing how the Muslim’s Religion is
destroyed by craving after wealth and worldly status. It shows that the corruption to one’s Religion caused by this is no less than the destruction caused if two ravenous wolves
were left to spend the night amongst a flock of sheep whose shepherd was absent, and they were free to slaughter and feed at will. So as is clear in such a state none of the sheep,
except perhaps a few would survive the carnage caused by the two wolves. So Allaah’s Messenger ()
informed that a person’s craving after wealth and status will not cause less
damage than the damage caused to the sheep by the two wolves. Rather the damage caused will either be the same, or greater. This shows that when a person craves after wealth and
status not much of the Muslim’s Religion will remain unharmed, just as only a few of the sheep would escape the destruction caused by the two wolves.
So flee, May Allaah have mercy upon you, from this mad craving after this world and its finery, and there is no salvation from that which has been destined
for a person.
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 Reported by Ahmad (3/456 and 460), at-Tirmidhee (no.2376), al Bukhaaree in at-Tareekhul Kabeer (1/1/150)
and others and its chain of narration is saheeh.
 From Ibn Rajab’s explanation (Sharh) of this hadeeth.
Publisher’s note: Ibn Rajab’s explanation of this hadeeth has been published in English under the title The Evil of Craving for Wealth and Status (Al-Hidaayah Publishing and Distribution, 1995).