Why Do People Commit Sins Despite Doing Dhikr?

Answered by Mawlana Ilyas Patel


I have this question that deals with tazkiya: I know people who do a lot of dhikr, and pray Tahajjud, but they listen to music, take an interest, etc.

Isn’t Tazkiya a process of cleansing the heart? But they don’t seem to have a clean heart; they behave bad so, why do they have such bad manners? Are they supposed to be pious as they do tazkiya?


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

The truth of the matter is we have four enemies; ego (nafs), world (dunya), desire (hawa), and shaytan. Due to our weaknesses, we drift away into the valleys of heedlessness and sin, then when we realize we bring ourselves to some realization or start to have control in avoiding sin, depending on the effort we make for change.

It is Allah’s grace (fadl) that we rely upon, not our efforts, so we all need to make a continuous sincere, earnest effort, along with supplicating to Allah. We continuously need to repent, ask forgiveness, doing His remembrance (dhikr) to bring about a change in our lives and purify our hearts.

Earnest Effort (mujahada) and Supplication (dua)

Allah says in the Quran, “those who struggle in Our way, We guide them to Our paths, and Allah is with the people of excellence.” [Quran 29:69]

In another verse, He says, “Allah does not change a people until they change what is in themselves.” [Quran, 13:11]

We supplicate to Allah (Most High) for guidance in all our prayers. He has connected supplication (dua) with earnest effort and struggle and promised in return guidance unto Him.


It is important to seek knowledge about a praiseworthy and evil character, so one can remove bad traits and inculcate good character. SeekersGuidance is one platform to direct and guide others to sound knowledge and connect them to on-the-ground reliable scholars wherever they reside.

I want to recommend you the following reader:
How Can I Purify My Heart? A Reader – SeekersGuidance

I pray this helps with your questions.

[Mawlana] Ilyas Patel
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Mawlana Ilyas Patel is a traditionally-trained scholar who has studied within UK, India, Pakistan, Syria, Jordan and Turkey.

He started his early education in UK. He went onto complete hifz of Qur’an in India, then enrolled into an Islamic seminary in UK where he studied the secular and Alimiyyah sciences. He then travelled to Karachi, Pakistan.

He has been an Imam in Rep of Ireland for a number of years. He has taught hifz of the Qur’an, Tajwid, Fiqh and many other Islamic sciences to both children and adults onsite and online extensively in UK and Ireland. He was teaching at a local Islamic seminary for 12 years in the UK where he was a librarian and a teacher of Islamic sciences.

He currently resides in UK with his wife. His personal interest is love of books and gardening.