The root of good opinion is a man’s belief and the soundness of his heart; the sign of good opinion is that whenever he looks, he sees with the eye of purity and virtue wherever he goes, and modesty, trustworthiness, protection and truthfulness are cast into his heart. The Holy Prophet said, ‘Have a good opinion of your brothers: through that you will gain purity of heart and firmness of nature.’ And Ubayy ibn Ka’b said, ‘When you see a quality which you disapprove of in one of your brothers, then give it seventy interpretations and see if your heart can be at peace with one of them. If it is not, then blame yourself if you cannot excuse him. If you yourself have a quality which will easily make for seventy interpretations, then you should disapprove of yourself more than you do of him.’ As Allah revealed to David, ‘Remind My slaves of My blessings and My favours. They have only seen exquisite goodness from Me so they should only expect that what remains will be like what they have already had from Me.’ Good opinion invites good worship. A person who is deluded continues to remain in rebellion even while he hopes for forgiveness. The best opinion in Allah’s creation is reserved for those who obey Him, hope for His reward and fear His punishment.
The Messenger of Allah said, relating from his Lord, ‘I am with My slave’s good opinion of Me, O Muhammad.’ Whoever fails to live up to the reality of the gifts which come from his opinion of his Lord has intensified the proof against himself, and is among those who are deceived by the shackles of his passion.