In the shade of the Quran Vol. 30 by Sayid Qutb Surah 83 The Stingers(Al Mutaffifeen)
Surah 83 The Stingers(Al Mutaffifeen)
…indeed the hearts of those who indulge in sin become dull as if they are veiled with a thick curtain which keeps them in total darkness, unable to see the light. Thus they gradually lose the sensitivity and become lifeless.
The Prophet said: “When a man commits a sin, a black spot is formed on his heart. If he desists , prays for forgiveness and repents, his heart will be polished; but if he persists, the spot grows bigger until it has covered his whole heart.”
…those who strive for an object of this world, no matter how superb, grand or honorable it is, are in reality striving for something hollow, cheap and temporary. This world, in its totality, is not worth, in Allah’s view, one mosquito’s wing.
It is the Hereafter which carries real weight with Him. So it should be the goal for strenuous competition and zealous striving.
It is remarkable that striving for the Hereafter elevates the souls of all the strivers, while competition for worldly objects sinks their souls to low depths. As man works continuously to achieve the happiness of the Hereafter, his work makes this world a happy and pure one for everybody. On the other hand, efforts made for the achievement of worldly ends turn this world into a filthy marsh, where animals devour one another and insects bite the flesh of the righteous.
Striving for the Hereafter does not turn the earth into a barren desert, as some transgressors imagine. Islam considers this world a farm and the Hereafter its fruits. It defines the role of the true believers as the building of this world while following the path of piety and righteousness. Islam stipulates that man must look on his task as an act of worship which fulfills the purpose of his existence as defined by Allah: “I created mankind and the Jinn that they worship me.”
That statement, “For this let the strivers emulously strive,” inspires man to look for beyond this finite, little world, as he sets out to fulfill his mission as Allah’s vicegerent on earth. Thus, as they work on purifying the filthy marsh of this world then souls are elevated to new heights.
Man’s life on earth is limited while his future life is of limitless duration. The luxuries of this world are also limited while the happiness of Paradise is much too great for us to conceive. The elements of happiness in this life are well known to everyone, but in the next world they are on a level befitting a life which is everlasting.