Musleh-al-Umma Maulana Wasiullah Allahabadi (Allah have mercy on him) said,
” Deen (religiosity) in reality is the name given to the life of the heart.
This life sprouts by having concern for the hereafter (akhira).
These days in spite of increasing outward acts of religiosity like prayers (salah), fasting, religious gatherings and discourses, religious teachers and students, even more than before, the (religiously cognizant and) savvy (ahle ahsas) individuals realize that all these activities are lifeless.
Now only the (outer) form of Deen exists. The (inner form, the) spirit has become extinct.
The reason for this (calamity) is that in places where there are no spiritually cognizant and capable mentors then how would the people of that locality know about the spiritual and esoteric matters. If they are unaware of these matters then it will be impossible for them to practice them. Without practice a (spiritual) state (that is, concern for the hereafter) will not develop. In these areas only the outward form of (religious activities like) prayers and fasting will exist and the reality and spirit (of Deen) will be corrupted. This will lead to spread of (religious) deviance and corruption in that locality.’
Majalis e Musleh al ummat, Wasiyet al Irfan Aug/Sept 2008 issue, page 18 (Translated originally by Shaikh Dr. Danish Ahmed sahib db UAE. Edited)