Message of Thaqalayn

A Quarterly Journal of Islamic Studies

Hypocrisy and its Levels

Abstract: A two-faced person whose non-verbal or verbal behaviour contradicts his inner beliefs is deemed a hypocrite. Since hypocrisy is linked to the psychological and mental state, it is mostly dealt with in Islamic ethical discussions as a trait equivalent to insincerity. Hypocrisy as stated and indicated in the Qur’an largely refers to either hypocrisy in one’s beliefs or hypocrisy in politics, both resulting from intentional disbelief (kufr). Nonetheless, hypocrites are heavily reproached in the Qur’an. Since the dawn of Islam, hypocrites, the internal enemies of Islam, held a deep rancour towards Islam and were harmful obstacles in the advancement of an Islamic society that helped everyone achieve social justice and individual growth. This article expounds on the definition of hypocrisy, its levels, its connotation in the Qur’an and hadith, and the differences between both hypocrisy and falsehood, and hypocrisy and dissimulation (taqiyyah). 

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