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How Islam Wants A Muslim To Treat The People Around Him

 

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Islam as a religion of peace taught us how to interact with the people around us, whether muslims or non muslims even including animals.

 

The Holy Quran and the Hadith mention various categories of people that one has to deal with, and give a great deal of guidance on how to behave towards each of them.

 

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1. Parents and the elderly:

“Your Lord has commanded that you worship none but Him, and do good to parents. If one or both of them reach old age with you, do not say ‘Fie’ to them, nor chide them, but speak to them a generous word.

And lower unto them the wing of submission and humility through mercy, and say: “My Lord, have mercy on them as they brought me up when I was little.”

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(17:23-24).

 

The Holy Prophet said: “It is one of the greatest sins that a man should curse his parents.” Someone said: “How can a man curse his own parents?” He said: “If a man abuses the father of another, that person will abuse his parents (in return).”

(Report by Bukhari)

 

2. Other Near Relatives:

“Do good to the near relatives.” (4:36)

“Give to the near relative his due, and also to the needy and to the traveller (in need of help). (17:26).

 

3. Children:

“Do not kill your children for fear of poverty – We (Allah) provide for them and for you.” (17:31)

“A man came to the Holy Prophet (SAW) and said, `You kiss children but we do not kiss them’. The Holy Prophet said, `Do I have any control over you if Allah has taken away mercy from your heart’.”

(Report by Bukhari.)

 

4. Orphans and destitute children:

“Maintain the orphans out of their property and clothe them and give them a good education. Test them when they reach the age of majority, and if you find them to be mature, hand over their property to them.”

(4:5-6)

 

The Prophet (sollallahu alaehi wasallam) said: “I and the man who brings up an orphan will be in paradise like this,” He said putting together his forefinger and middle finger.

(Report by Bukhari.)

 

5. Poor and needy:

It is not righteousness that you turn your faces towards east and west (in prayers); but righteousness is (the quality of) the one who believes in Allah, the Last Day, the Angels, the Book, the Prophets and gives his wealth, in spite of love for it, to the kinsfolk, to the orphans, and to the poor, and to the wayfarer, and to those who ask, and to set slaves free, performs salat, and gives the Zakat, and who fulfill their covenant when they make it, and who are patient ones in extreme poverty and ailment (disease) and at the time of fighting (during the battles). Such are the people of the truth and they are the pious

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(2:177)

 

“What will make you understand what the uphill road (to success) is? (It is) to free a slave, or feed at a time of hunger an orphan who is a relative or the poor man lying in the dust.” (90:11-16)

“Have you seen him who goes against religion? That is the one who is rough to the orphan and does not urge the feeding of the needy.”

(107:1-3)

“(The true believers are those) in whose wealth there is a known right for the beggar and the destitute.” (70:24-25)

 

6 – Widows:

The Prophet (sollallahu alaehi wasallam) said: “The person who is swift in helping the widow and the poor is like the one who strives hard in the way of Allah.” (Holy Prophet in Bukhari.)

 

7 – Neighbours:

Worship Allah and join none with Him in worship, and do good to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, Al-Masakin (the poor), the neighbour who is near of kin, the neighbour who is a stranger, the companion by your side, the wayfarer (you meet), and those (slaves) whom your right hands possess. Verily, Allah does not like such as are proud and boastful

(4:36)

“He is not a believer who fills his stomach while his neighbour is hungry.”

(Bukhari)

“The angel Gabriel continued to enjoin upon me good treatment of the neighbour, so much so that I thought he would make him heir to one’s property.”

(Holy Prophet in Bukhari)

 

8. Wives/Husbands:

“They (your wives) are a garment for you, and you are a garment for them.”

(2:187)

“Of His (Allah’s) signs is that He created spouses for you from yourselves so that you might find quiet of mind in them, and He put between you love and compassion.”

(30:21)

“The best of you are those who are kindest to their wives.”

(Holy Prophet in Tirmizi.)

A man related:

“I asked Aishah (Holy Prophet’s wife): What did the Prophet do when in his house? She said, `He served his wife’, meaning that he did work for his wife.” (Report in Bukhari.)

 

9. Employers/Employees:

“(The true believers) are those who are keepers of their trusts and covenants.”

(23:8)

“Trusts” include the duties and the other things with which an employee is entrusted by his employer; “covenants” include the contract by which both the employer and the employee are bound.

“Allah says: There are three persons whose opponents I shall be on the Day of Judgment . . . (the third is) the person who employs a servant and receives fully the labour due from him, but does not pay his wages.”

(Holy Prophet in Bukhari.)

And a companion of the Holy Prophet, related:

“I served the Holy Prophet for ten years, and he never said to me, `Fie’, nor did he ever say `Why have you done this’, or `Why have you not done that’.” (Report in Bukhari.)

 

10. Animals:

“There is no animal in the earth, nor a bird flying on its two wings, but they are communities like yourselves (O people).”

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(6:38)

Someone asked the Holy Prophet: “Is there a reward for us (from Allah) for doing good to beasts?” He replied:

“In every animal having a liver fresh with life there is a reward.”

(Holy Prophet in Mishkat.)

“Be careful of your duty to Allah in the matter of dumb animals; ride them while they are in a fit condition, and eat them while they are in a fit condition.”

(Holy Prophet in Abu Dawud.)

 

11. Authorities:

Regarding electing and appointing people to positions of authority, the Quran says:

“Allah commands you to make over trusts (or positions of trust and authority) to those worthy of them.”

(4:58)

Some other principles are as follows:

“Obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority from among you; then if you quarrel about anything (with your authorities) refer it to Allah and the Messenger” (4:59), i.e. settle the disagreement by means of the Holy Quran and the Holy Prophet’s example.

 

“Obedience (of authority) is due only in good matters”, i.e., orders to do wrong must not be obeyed. (Holy Prophet in Bukhari.)

The first head of state of the Muslims after the Holy Prophet, Abu Bakir (radiyallohu anhu), said in a speech after his election:

“Help me if I am in the right. Correct me if I am in the wrong. Obey me as long as I obey Allah and His Messenger; in case I disobey Allah and His Messenger, I have no right to obedience from you.”

“The most excellent jihad is to speak the truth in the face of an unjust ruler.” (Holy Prophet in Mishkat.)

 

12. Muslims:

“Hold fast by the covenant of Allah all together and be not disunited. And remember Allah’s favour to you when you were enemies, then He united your hearts, so by His favour you became brethren.”

(3:103)

“The believers are brethren, so make peace between your brethren . . . Do not find fault with your own people, nor call one another by (bad) nicknames.”

(49:10-12)

“Help one another in good and righteous works, and do not help one another in sin and aggression.” (5:2)

“Do not hate one another and do not be jealous of one another and do not boycott one another, and be servants of Allah, as brothers; and it is not lawful for a Muslim to sever his relations with his brother for more than three days.” (Holy Prophet in Bukhari.)

“You will see the believers in their having mercy for one another, and in their love for one another, and in their kindness towards one another, like the human body: when one limb is ailing, the whole body feels it, one part calling out the other with sleeplessness and fever.”

(Holy Prophet in Bukhari.)

“None of you has faith until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself.”

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(Holy Prophet in Bukhari.)

 

13. Those who abuse Muslims:

“Bear patiently what they (abusers) say.”

(20:130)

“Disregard their annoying talk.”

(33:48)

“When you hear Allah’s messages disbelieved in and mocked at, sit not with them until they enter into some other talk.”

(4:140)

“And if you invite them to guidance, they hear not; and you see them looking towards you, yet they see not. Take to forgiveness and enjoin good and turn away from the ignorant.”

(7:198-199)

“The Messenger of Allah and his Companions used to forgive the idolaters and the followers of the book (Jews and Christians), as Allah had commanded them, and they used to show patience on hearing hurtful words.”

(Bukhari.)

 

14. Enemies:

“Repel evil with what is best, when lo! he between whom and you there is enmity will be like a warm friend.”

(41:34)

“Many of the people of the book wish that they could turn you back into disbelievers after you have believed, out of envy from themselves. . .. But pardon and forgive.”

(2:109)

“And you will always find treachery in them, except a few of them. So pardon them and forgive. Surely Allah loves those who do good to others.”

(5:13)

 

15. Non-Muslims:

“Allah does not forbid you concerning those people who do not fight you because of your religion, nor expel you from your homes, that you show them kindness and deal with them justly.. . . Allah forbids you only concerning those people who fight you for your religion, and drive you from your homes and help others to expel you, that you make friends of them.”

(60: 8,9)

“O you who believe, be upright for Allah, bearers of witness with justice; and do not let the hatred of a people incite you not to act with justice. Be just; that is nearer to observance of duty.”

(5:8)

“Call (others) to the way of your Lord with wisdom and goodly exhortation, and argue with them in the best manner.”

(16:125)

 

A companion of the Holy Prophet relates:

“A funeral procession passed by the Holy Prophet, and he (the Prophet) stood up for it. People said to him: It was the funeral of a Jew. He said: Was it not a human life?” (Report in Bukhari.)

 

16. Mankind in general:

“Mankind is a single nation.”

(2:213)

“O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into races and families so that you may know each other. The most honoured of you in Allah’s sight are those who best keep their duty.”

(49:13)

“We (Allah) have not sent you (O Muhammad) except as a mercy to the nations.”

(21:107)

“Speak good words to all people.”

(2:83)

“Allah commands you that . . . when you judge between people (i.e., of any race, religion, family, class, etc.), you judge with justice.”

(4:58).

 

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