As I reflected especially on ayat 13 to 18 of Surah at-Taghabun, I took away from tonight's lesson the need to remain consciously zuhd - Imaam Ibn Al-Qayyim, may Allaah have mercy upon him, defines zuhd as: "Zuhd is abandoning what does not bring about benefit in the Hereafter. Wara' is abandoning what you fear will have consequences in the Hereafter. This statement is one of the best and most comprehensive definitions of Az-Zuhd and Al-Wara'."
Surrounded by material wealth thick in the midst of a society that embraces consumerism blindly, it seems like a challenging task. Nonetheless, with what little knowledge I gained from Tawasuur Islam (alhamdulilLah), I reflect on the sayings of Sayidinna Ali RA and it is coming full circle for me - that if you worship Allah SWT out of your love for Him, this is indeed the worship of free and noble men, subhan Allah.
It makes perfect sense to be close to Allah SWT as outlined by Surah ar-Rad: 26 - "Allah enlargeth livelihood for whom He will, and straiteneth (it for whom He will); and they rejoice in the life of the world, whereas the life of the world is but brief comfort as compared with the Hereafter."
There may be critics who say that life of luxury is not wrong. Yes, it is not Haraam and one has a choice to be in this world or of this world (detachment vs. indifference)... truly Allah SWT dislike those who live in excess, blind to the needful. And one's self-worth is not based on one's possessions but tawakal alalLah (true conviction that all in the heavens and the earth belongs to Allah Azza wa Jalla). I end with this nice post by Abdal-Hakim Murah which Sheikh shared with us on a warning we should heed.
Afterthought: I'm constantly reminded to be more conscious when buying what I need vs. what I want, how I dispose off my hard-earned income to the rightful as I continue to seek Allah's barakah in all that I do, insya Allah. Truly all that I have in my hand is but a 'loan' from Allah SWT and it is my amanah to spend it in the way which pleases Him. May Allah SWT protect me, my family, future generation and Ummah from the Hellfire, ameen ya Rabbal A'lamiin.