30 Tips to Avoid Being Angry and Argumentative


“Show forgiveness, enjoin what is good, and turn away from the foolish.” (Qur’an, 7:199)

How difficult is it to practice patience when being provoked? At the same time, how many times have we responded much too sensitively, although we were not the clear target of anyone’s malice? How many hearts have been lost in an effort to win arguments? And yet, as human beings it is natural and even our right to disagree, and to think critically.

One of the most difficult challenges of character for Muslims of every background is being able to practice hilm (forbearance) during times of anger and disagreement—that is to be able to disagree with a dignified and generous spirit, and to think critically without being argumentative, stubborn, and condescending. It is because we as a community fall into this so much, and on so many levels, that I found this issue to be a relevant reminder to myself and others.
The activist argues about strategy, the student argues about fiqh and other branches of knowledge, the community leader argues in the board room, and the Imam with those who disagree with his style or approach. Whether it be with our family, friends, community members or the Islamophobe—we often find ourselves in situations where anger and argumentation can creep in, sour the mood, and sully the spirit.

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Below is a collection of Quranic verses, Prophetic narrations DO READ THEM THIS MAY HELP U A LOT IN SHAA Allah
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1. “And when the foolish address them (with bad words) they reply back with ‘Salamaa’ (peaceful words of gentleness).” (Qur’an, 25:63)

2. “If they pass by some vain speech or play, they pass by it with dignity.” (Qur’an, 25:72)

3. “And be moderate in your pace and lower your voice; indeed, the most disagreeable of sounds is the voice of donkeys… But of the people is he who disputes about Allah without knowledge or guidance or an enlightening Book.” (Qur’an, 31:19-20)

4. The Prophet Muhammad ﷺ (peace be upon him) said: “He who gave up disputing while he is right, a palace of high rank in Paradise will be built for him. He who gave up disputing while he is a fabricator, a palace in the center of Paradise will be built for him.” (al-Tirmidhi who declared it as hasan)

5. “There are no people who went astray after having been guided except for indulging in disputation.” (al-Tirmidhi)

6. The Messenger of Allah ﷺ repeated three times, “Those who search deeply for confusing questions have perished.” (Muslim)

7. “Do not dispute with your brother, ridicule him, nor promise him and then break your promise.” (al-Tirmidhi)

8. Bilal ibn Sa’d radiAllahu `anhu (ra) said, “If you see a disputing, arrogant, and bigoted person, bear in mind that they are utterly lost.”

9. Luqman `alayhi assalam (as) said to his son, “O son! Do not dispute with the knowledgeable lest they detest you.”

10. `Umar (ra) said, “Do not learn knowledge for three things and do not leave it for three things. Do not learn it to dispute over it, to show off with it, or to boast about it. Do not leave seeking it out of shyness, dislike for it, or contending with ignorance in its stead.”

11. It was narrated that Abu Hanifa said to Dawud al-Taa’i, “Why do you prefer seclusion?” Dawud replied, “To struggle against myself to leave disputing.” Abu Hanifah said, “Attend meetings, listen to what is said, and remain silent.” Dawud said, “I have done so, but I have found nothing heavier than this.”

12. `A’ishah (ra) narrated that the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “The most hated person with Allah is the most quarrelsome person.” (al-Bukhari)

13. Ibn Qutaybah said that his disputant said to him, “What is the matter with you?” He replied to him, “I will not dispute with you.” The disputant then said, “Thus you have come to know that I am right.” Ibn Qutaybah responded, “No, but I respect myself more than that.” At this the disputant retracted and said, “And I will not claim a thing that is not my right.”

14. The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said: “The one initiating abuse incurs the sin of abusing as long as the other did not return it.” (Muslim)

15. “The believer does not curse.” (al-Tirmidhi who declared it hasan)

16. “The believer does not defame, abuse, disparage, nor vilify.” (al-Tirmidhi, sahih)

17. “Do not invoke Allah’s curse, His anger, or Hellfire.” (al-Tirmidhi who declared it hasan sahih)

18. “Men accustomed to cursing will not be intercessors or witnesses on the Day of Resurrection.” (Muslim)

19. Abdullah ibn ‘Amr (ra) narrated, “I asked the Messenger of Allah ﷺ about what saves me from Allah’s wrath, and he said, “Do not become angry.” (al-Tabarani and Ibn Abdul Barr) Ibn `Umar, Ibn Mas’ud, and Abu Darda’ (ra) relate similar conversations on their own behalf.

20. The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said, “He who is victorious over his passion at the time of anger is the strongest among you. He who forgives having the power to release (his anger and take revenge) is the most patient among you.” (a-Baihaqi in Shu’ab al-Imaan)

21. Abu Hurairah (ra) narrated, “The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said, ‘The strong person is not he who has physical strength but the person is strong if he can control his anger.” (al-Bukhari and Muslim)

22. `Umar ibn Abdul Aziz wrote to one of his governors and said, “Do not punish at the time of anger. If you are angry with any man, keep him in detention. When your anger is appeased punish him in proportion to his crime.”

23. ‘Ali ibn Zaid mentioned, “A man of the Quraysh spoke harshly to the Caliph `Umar Ibn ‘Abdul ‘Aziz who remained silent for a long time and then said, “You wish that the devil rouses in me the pride of the Caliphate and I treat you so rudely that you can take revenge tomorrow (in the Afterlife) on me.”

24. Ibn ‘Abbas (ra) narrated, the Messenger of Allah ﷺ said, “And when you get angry, keep silent.” (Ahmad, Ibn Abi Dunya, al-Tabarani, and al-Bayhaqi)

25. The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said, “Anger is a burning coal. It burns in the heart.” (al-Tirmidhi and al-Bayhaqi)

26. “When anyone of you gets angry, let him perform ablution because anger arises from fire.” (Abu Dawud)

27. “Nobody swallows a more bitter pill than that of anger—seeking the satisfaction of Allah.” (Ibn Majah)

28. `Umar (ra) said, “He who fears Allah cannot give an outlet to his anger (by sinning). He who fears Allah cannot do what he likes.”

29. A nomad said to the Messenger of Allah ﷺ “Advise me.” And he ﷺ said, “If a man defamed you with what he knows about you, do not defame him with what you know about him. For the sin is against him.” The nomad said, “I never abused any person after that.”

30. Al-Hasan (ra) said, “He that did not safeguard his tongue did not understand his religion.”

You thought it was over didn’t you? Here is a little something extra to encourage us not only to avoid such negative traits, but to also proactively seek positive ones in their place.

May Allah help us to remember that when we deal with people, our transactions are actually with Him and not His creation. As such, may awareness of His presence (ihsan) bring goodness from our speech and characters during times of difficulty as well as ease. Ameen..
By Brother Iftik Mir Zakks

Do’ful Eemaan [Weakness of Faith] – Part 1


Introduction
Praise be to Allaah, we praise Him and seek His help and forgiveness. We seek refuge with Allaah from the evil of our own souls and from our evil deeds. Whomever Allaah guides, none can lead astray, and whomever Allaah leaves astray, none can guide. I bear witness that there is no god except Allaah alone, with no partner or associate, and I bear witness that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger.
“O you who believe! Fear Allaah as He should be feared, and die not except in a state of Islam (as Muslims), with complete submission to Allaah.” [Aal ‘Imraan 3:102 – interpretation of the meaning].
“
O mankind! Be dutiful to your Lord, Who created you from a single person (Adam) and from him He created his wife (Hawwa), and from them both he created many men and women, and fear Allaah through Whom you demand your mutual (rights), and (do not cut the relations of) the wombs (kinship). Surely, Allaah is Ever an All-Watcher over you.” [al-Nisa’ 4:1 – interpretation of the meaning].
“
O you who believe! Keep your duty to Allaah and fear Him, and speak (always) the truth. He will direct you to do righteous good deeds and will forgive you your sins. And whosoever obeys Allaah and His Messenger, he has indeed achieved a great achievement (i.e., he will be saved from the Hell-fire and made to enter Paradise).” [al-Ahzaab 33:70-71 –interpretation of the meaning].
The phenomenon of weak faith has become very widespread among Muslims, and many people complain about the hardness of their hearts. So often we hear the words, “I feel hardness in my heart,” “I do not find any joy in worship,” “I feel that my faith has hit rock bottom,” “Reading Qur’aan does not move me,” “I fall into sin so easily.” The  effects of this affliction can be seen in many people, and this problem is the cause of every disaster and adversity.

The issue of people’s hearts is an important and sensitive issue. The heart is called qalb in Arabic because it changes so quickly and frequently (taqallub . alteration, variation, ups and downs). The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: .
The heart (qalb) takes its name from its constant changes (taqallub). The likeness of the heart is that of a feather at the root of a tree, being turned over and over by the wind.. (Reported by Ahmad, 4/408; Saheeh al-Jaami., 2364). 
According to another report: .
The likeness of the heart is that of a feather in an empty plot of land, being blown over and over by the wind.. (Reported by Ibn Abi .Aasim in Kitaab al-Sunnah. No. 227. Its isnaad is saheeh, see Zilaal al-Jannah fi Takhreej al-Sunnah by al-Albaani, 1/102).
Man’s heart changes constantly, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) described: .
The heart of the son of Adam changes more quickly than a pan of rapidly boiling water.. (Ibid., no. 226. Its isnaad is saheeh: Zilaal al-Jannah, 1/102), 
According to another report: .
It changes more than a pot of rapidly boiling water.. (Reported by Ahmad, 6/4; Saheeh al-Jaami., no. 5147).
Allaah is the One Who turns hearts around and controls them. .Abd-Allaah ibn .Amr ibn al-.Aas reported that he heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say:
The hearts of the children of Adam are as one between the fingers of the Most Merciful, and He turns them in whatever way He wills.. Then he said: .O Allaah, Controller of the hearts, direct our hearts to obey You.. (Reported by Muslim, no. 2654).
Allaah tells us that:
.. Allaah comes in between a person and his heart (i.e., He prevents an evil person from deciding anything).. [al-Anfaal 8:24 . interpretation of the meaning]
..no one will be saved on the Day of Resurrection .except him who brings to Allaah a clean heart [free from shirk and hypocrisy].. [al-Shu.ara. 26:89 . interpretation of the meaning]
..those whose hearts are hardened. [al-Hajj 22:53 interpretation of the meaning] are doomed and the promise of Paradise is for those .who feared the Most Beneficent (Allaah) in the Unseen, (i.e., in the worldly life, before seeing and meeting Him), and brought a heart turned in repentance (to Him).. [Qaaf 50:33 . interpretation of the meaning].
So the believer must check his heart, find out the nature and cause of the problem, and start treating it straight away, before it overwhelms him and destroys him. The matter is of the utmost seriousness, for Allaah has warned us against the heart that is hardened, closed, sick, blind and sealed.
There follows a discussion of the symptoms of weak faith, what causes it and how it may be treated. I ask Allaah to benefit me and my Muslim brothers through this work, and to richly reward all those who have played a part in producing this book, for He is the One Whom we ask to soften our hearts and guide us. He is our Protector, He is sufficient for us and He is the Best Disposer of affairs.
Symptoms of weak faith
There are a number of symptoms of the sickness of weak faith, including the following:
1. Falling into sin and committing haraam deeds: there are some sinners who commit a sin and persist in it, and some who commit many kinds of sin.
When a person commits many sins, sin becomes a habit which he gets used to, and then he no longer feels that it is abhorrent. He gradually reaches a stage where he commits the sin openly, and thus becomes one of those referred to in the hadeeth: “
All of my ummah will be fine except for those who commit sin openly, an example of which is a man who does something at night, and when morning comes and Allaah has concealed his sin, he says, ‘O So-and-so, I did such and such yesterday.’ His Lord had covered his sin all night, but he has uncovered what Allaah had concealed.” (Reported by al-Bukhaari, Fath 10/486).
2. Feeling that one’s heart is hard and rough. A man may feel that his heart has turned to stone which nothing can penetrate or reach. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “
Then, after that, your hearts were hardened and became as stones or even worse in hardness…” [al-Baqarah 2:74]. 
The person whose heart is hard will not be moved by reminders of death or by seeing deceased persons or funerals. He may even carry a dead person to his grave and throw earth into the grave, but when he walks between the graves it is as if he is merely walking between rocks.
3. Not doing acts of worship properly. His mind wanders and he fails to concentrate properly when praying, reading Qur’aan, making du’aa’, etc. He does not think about what he is saying, and he recites the words as the matter of boring habit, if he does these regularly at all.
If he has the habit of praying a certain du’aa’ at certain times, according to the sunnah, he does not think about the meaning of what he is saying, and Allaah “does not accept the du’aa’ of one whose heart is heedless of Him.” (Reported by al-Tirmidhi, no. 3479; al-Silsilah al-Saheehah, 594).
4. Laziness and carelessness in performing acts of worship. If he does them at all, they are just empty movements, devoid of any real feeling. Allaah has described the hypocrites thus (interpretation of the meaning):
“…
and when they stand up for prayer, they stand up with laziness…” [al-Nisa’ 4:142]. 
This also includes neglecting to make the most of special occasions and times for worship. This indicates that a person has no interest in earning reward, so he may delay going for Hajj although he is able to do so, or fail to go for jihaad when he has the strength to do so, or fail to attend prayers in congregation, or even Salat al-Jumu’ah.
The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
“People will keep holding back from being in the first row (of congregational prayers), until Allaah throws them into the Fire.” (Reported by Abu Dawood, no. 679; Saheeh al-Targheeb, no. 510). 
This kind of person does not feel any remorse or guilt if he sleeps and misses one of the obligatory prayers, or a sunnah prayer that is strongly encouraged, or a wird [regular du’aa’ and dhikr]. He does not want to make it up later, and he deliberately omits doing anything that is sunnah or fard kifaayah (a duty which, if carried out by some of the people, is no longer obligatory on all, but if no-one does it, all are held accountable). So he may not attend Eid prayers (although some scholars say that they are obligatory), or offer the prayers to be said at the time of lunar and solar eclipses, or attend funerals. He does not care about reward at all, which is the opposite of the ideal described by Allaah in the Qur’aan (interpretation of the meaning): “…
they used to hasten on to do good deeds, and they used to call on Us with hope and fear, and used to humble themselves before Us.” [al-Anbiya’ 21:90]
Another example of laziness in performing acts of worship is the neglect of sunnah actions which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) performed regularly, and praying at night (qiyaam al-layl), setting out early to go to the mosque, and other naafil prayers, such as duhaa, never even occur to him, let alone the two-rak’ahs of tawbah (repentance) and istikhaarah.
Tightness in the chest, mood swings and depression, which weigh a man down and make him quick to complain about the slightest thing. He easily gets upset with the people around him, and no longer has any tolerance.
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) described faith when he said, “
Eemaan is patience and tolerance” (Al-Silsilah al-Saheehah, no. 554, 2/86),
and he described,
the believer as being “one who makes friends and with whom others feel comfortable. There is no goodness in one who does not make friends and with whom others do not feel comfortable.” (Al-Silsilah al-Saheehah, no. 427).
5. Not being moved by the aayaat of the Qur’aan, by its promises of Paradise or its warnings of Hell, by its commands and prohibitions, or by its descriptions of the Day of Resurrection.
The one who is weak in faith gets bored when he hears the Qur’aan being recited, and cannot continue reading it. Whenever he opens the mus-haf, he soon closes it again.
Not focusing on Allaah when remembering Him (dhikr) or making du’aa’, so dhikr becomes difficult for him, and when he raises his hands to make du’aa’, he quickly lowers them again. Allaah has described the hypocrites (interpretation of the meaning):
“…..and they do not remember Allaah but little.” [al-Nisa’ 4:142]
6. Not feeling angry when the limits set by Allaah are violated, because the flame of zeal has been extinguished in his heart, so he no longer takes action to stop evil, or enjoins evildoers to do good, or denounces wrongdoing. He never gets angry for the sake of Allaah. The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) described this heart ravaged by weakness in the saheeh hadeeth: “
The heart will be subjected to trial after trial, and there will appear a black stain on any heart that is affected, which will spread until the heart is completely black and sealed, as it were, so that it will not recognize any good deed or denounce any evil, except whatever suits its own desires.” (Reported by Muslim, no. 144). 
7. Love of good and hatred of evil have disappeared from a heart like this; all things are equal to such a person, and he has no motive to enjoin good or forbid evil. He may hear of some evil that is being done on earth, and may accept it; in this case he carries the same burden of sin as one who witnesses evil and approves of it, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said in the saheeh hadeeth:
“If sin is committed on earth, the one who witnesses it and hates it [one time he said, ‘denounces it’] will be like one who knew nothing of it. Whoever does not witness it but approves of it will be like one who witnesses it.” (Reported by Abu Dawood, no. 4345; Saheeh al-Jaami’, 689). 
This approval, which is an action of the heart, makes him like one who witnessed the sin.
8. Love of fame and prominence, which may take many forms, including the following: Desire for leadership without understanding the serious responsibility involved.
This is what the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) warned us against when he said,
“You will be very keen to be leaders, but you will regret it on the Day of Resurrection, for although it seems easy in the beginning, it becomes a hardship later on [literally: the breastfeeding is a luxury but weaning is miserable].” (The meaning is that at the beginning, leadership brings wealth, power and enjoyment, but later it brings the risk of being assassinated or deposed, and one will be brought to account on the Day of Resurrection). (Reported by al-Bukhaari, no. 6729). 
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) also said:
“If you wish, I could tell you about leadership and what it is. Firstly, it is blame; secondly, it is regret; and thirdly, it is punishment on the Day of Resurrection – except for one who is just.” (Reported by al- Tabaraani in al-Kabeer, 18/72; Saheeh al-Jaami’, 1420).
If it were the case that a man wanted to carry out duties and responsibilities, where there is no one better for the job than him, with the intention of doing his best and being sincere and just, as Yusuf (peace be upon him) did, then we could say that this is fair enough. But in most cases it is the matter of a strong desire to lead and put oneself forward although there is a better person, denying the opportunity of leadership to those who are qualified and wanting to be the only one to issue instructions and prohibitions.
8. Loving to sit at the head of gatherings, to monopolize the discussion, to make others listen to one’s words, and to have power. The head of a gathering is the “slaughterhouse” about which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) warned us when he said, “
Beware of these slaughterhouses.” (Reported by al-Bayhaqi, 2/439; Saheeh al-Jaami’, 120).
Loving to have people stand up when one comes into the room, because this makes the one whose heart is diseased feel great. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “
Whoever feels happy to have the slaves of Allaah stand up for him, let him occupy his house in Hellfire.” (Reported by al-Bukhaari in al-Adab al-Mufrad, 977; see also Silsilah al-Saheeh, 357). 
Once when Mu’aawiyah went out to see Ibn al-Zubayr and Ibn ‘Aamir, Ibn ‘Aamir stood up whilst Ibn al-Zubayr remained sitting  (according to one report: and he [Ibn al-Zubayr] was wiser and more stable in character). Mu’aawiyah said to Ibn ‘Aamir, “Sit down, for I heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say, ‘
Whoever likes to have men stand up for him, let him take his place in Hellfire.’” (Reported by Abu Dawood, no. 5229, and by al-Bukhaari in al-Adab al-Mufrad, 977; al-Silsilah al-Saheehah, 357). 
This kind of person will get angry if the sunnah is followed and people start from the right (and not with him, when passing out refreshments, etc.);
when such a person enters a gathering, he will not be happy until someone gets up and gives him his seat, even though the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) forbade this when he said, “No man should make another get up from his place so that he can sit in it.” (Reported by al-Bukhaari, al-Fath, 11/62).
9. Stinginess and miserliness. Allaah praised the Ansaar in His Book by saying (interpretation of the meaning): “…
and [they] gave them [the muhaajiroon] preference over themselves, even though they were in need of that…” [al-Hashr 59:9]. 
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) explained that the successful are those who avoid miserliness, and that weakness of faith generates stinginess: “
Stinginess and faith never exist together in the heart of the believer.” (Reported by al-Nisaa’i, al-Mujtaba, 6/13; Saheeh al-Jaami’, 2678). 
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) also described the serious nature of stinginess and its consequences:
“Beware of stinginess, for those who came before you were destroyed because of stinginess. It commanded them to be miserly, so they were miserly; it commanded them to cut family ties, so they cut them; and it commanded them to be immoral, so they were immoral. (Reported by Abu Dawood, 2/324; Saheeh al-Jaami, no. 2678). 
When it comes to miserliness, the person whose faith is weak can hardly give anything for the sake of Allaah, even when there is an honest appeal and it is quite obvious that his brothers in Islam are suffering the impact of poverty and are stricken by disaster. There is no more eloquent statement on the matter of miserliness than the words of Allaah (interpretation of the meaning): “
Behold! You are those who are called to spend in the Cause of Allaah, yet among you are some who are niggardly. And whoever is niggardly, it is only at the expense of his own self. But Allaah is Rich (Free of all wants), and you (mankind) are poor. And if you turn away (from Islam and the obedience of Allaah), He will exchange for you some other people, and they will not be your likes.” [Muhammad 47:38].
9. Not practising what one preaches. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“O you who believe! Why do you say that which you do not do? Most hateful is it with Allaah that you say that which you do not do.” [al-Saff 61:2-3]. 
No doubt this is a kind of hypocrisy, and the person whose deeds do not match his words is blameworthy before Allaah and despicable in the eyes of his fellow man. The people of Hellfire will soon discover the reality of the one who enjoins good but does not do it, and forbids evil, but does it himself.
Malicious enjoyment of the failures, losses or disasters suffered by one’s brothers in Islam, when the blessings that they had enjoyed are taken away, or when the thing that made another person appear more distinguished than him is gone.
10. Looking at matters in black-or-white terms of whether they are sinful or not, and taking the matter of makrooh lightly.
Some people, when they want to do something, do not ask about what good deeds they could do, instead they ask, “Will this be counted as a sin, or is it ‘only’ makrooh?” This way of thinking leads them into the trap of issues that
are not clear-cut and deeds that are makrooh, and eventually ensnares them in haraam deeds. The person who thinks like this has nothing to stop him from committing makrooh or doubtful deeds so long as they are not actually haraam. This is exactly what the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was talking about what he said,
“Whoever falls into doubtful matters falls into haraam, like a shepherd who grazes his flock around a place where he is not allowed – he will soon enter it…” (Reported by al-Bukhaari and Muslim; this version narrated by Muslim, no. 1599).
When some people ask for a fatwa about something and are told that it is haraam, they ask, “Is it very haraam or not? How much sin is involved?” People like this have no interest in avoiding bad deeds; indeed, they are prepared to commit the first level of haraam and they take small sins
lightly, with the results that they they have the guts to transgress even further and violate the limits set by Allaah. For this reason the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
“I will certainly recognize people who will come on the Day of Resurrection bringing good deeds as great as the white mountain of Tuhaamah, and Allaah, may He be glorified, will make it like dust in the air.” Thawbaan said, “O Messenger of Allaah, describe them to us and explain this so that we will not unwittingly be among them.” He said, “They are your brothers and they look like you. They pray at night as you do, but if they had the opportunity to violate the limits set by Allaah, they would do so.” (Reported by Ibn Maajah, no. 4245. He said in al-Zawaa’id: its isnaad is saheeh and its men are thiqaat. See also Saheeh al-Jaami’, 5028).
So you will find such a person committing haraam deeds without any hesitation or reservation, which makes him worse than the one who does so after pausing and hesitating. Both are in danger, but the former is worse than the latter. This kind of person takes sins lightly as a result of his weakness of faith, and does not think that he has done anything wrong. For this reason, Ibn Mas’ood (may Allaah be pleased with him) described the attitude of the believer and of the hypocrite as follows: “
The believer sees his sins as if he were sitting beneath a mountain which he fears will fall on him, whilst the sinner sees his sins as if it were a fly passing his nose and he says such-and-such to it” – i.e., he shoos it away with his hand. (Reported by al-Bukhaari, al-Fath, 11/102; See also Taghleeq al-Ta’leeq, 5/136, publ. by al-Maktab al-Islami).
11.Thinking little of good deeds, and having no interest in doing small hasanaat. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) taught us to pay attention to small acts of goodness.
Imaam Ahmad (may Allaah have mercy on him) reported from Abu Juray al-Hujaymi who said, “I came to the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and said, ‘O Messenger of Allaah, we are a desert people. Teach us something by which Allaah, may He be blessed and exalted, will benefit us.’ He said, Do not look down on any act of goodness, even if it is just emptying your bucket into the vessel of one who wants to drink, or speaking to your brother with a cheerful expression.’” (Musnad Ahmad, 5/63; al-Silsilat al-Saheehah, 1352).
If someone comes wanting to drink from the well, and you lift up your bucket and empty it for him, this is a  good deed; even though it appears insignificant, you should not think little of it. The same applies to greeting your brother with a cheerful expression, and cleaning dirt and garbage from the mosque, even if it is as small as a straw. This deed may be the cause of your sins being forgiven, for Allaah will appreciate good deeds of this nature and will forgive sins because of them. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: .
A man passed a branch of a tree lying in the road and said, .By Allaah, I want to remove this out of the way of the Muslims so that it will not hurt them,. and he was admitted to Paradise.. (Reported byMuslim, no. 1914).
There is something wrong with the person who thinks little of simple acts of
goodness. It is sufficient punishment for this attitude that he is denied the great advantage described by the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him):
.Whoever removes something harmful from the path of the Muslims, one hasanah will be recorded for him, and whoever has a hasanah accepted, will enter Paradise.. (Reported by al-Bukhaari in al-Adab al-Mufrad, no. 593; see also al-Silsilat al-Saheehah, 5/387).
Mu’aadh was walking with another man, and he picked up a stone from the road. The man asked him, .What is this?. He said, .I heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say, .
Whoever removes a stone from the road, one hasanah will be recorded for him, and whoever has a hasanah, will enter Paradise… (al-Mu.jam al-Kabeer by al-Tabaraani, 20/101; al-Silsilat al-Saheeh, 5/387).
12. Lack of concern about the Muslims’ affairs and lack of any involvement whether it be by making du’aa., giving charity or helping them.
Such a person has a cool attitude towards the oppression, suppression and disasters suffered by his Muslim brothers in other parts of the world, and is content merely with his own safety. This is the result of weak faith, because the believer is the opposite of that. The Prophet (peace and blessings
of Allaah be upon him) said:
The believer.s position in relation to his fellow believers is like that of the head to the body; the believer feels the pain of his fellow believers as the body reacts to the pain suffered by the head.. (Musnad Ahmad, 5/340; al-Silsilat al-Saheehah, 1137).
13. Breaking the ties of brotherhood between two who used to be close. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
No two people are friends for the sake of Allaah or in Islam, but they will be split apart by the first sin (according to another report: they will only be split apart by the first sin) committed by either of them.. (al-Bukhaari, al-Adab al-Mufrad, no. 401; Ahmad, al-Musnad, 2/68; see also al-Silsilat al-Saheehah, 637).
This indicates the bad effects which may impact upon and even destroy
the bonds of brotherhood. This alienation which a man may feel between himself and his brother is a result of the lowering of faith caused by committing a sin, because Allaah causes him to lose his standing in the eyes of His slaves, and so he is in the miserable position of having no respect and misses out on the fellowship of the believers and the protection of Allaah, for Allaah protects those who believe.
14. Not feeling any responsibility to work for Islam and spread this religion, which is unlike the attitude of the Companions of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), who as soon as they entered this religion felt this responsibility straight away, for example, al-Tufayl ibn ‘Amr (may Allaah be pleased with him), who became Muslim and went to call his people to Islam straight away. He was only a new Muslim but he felt that he had to go back and call his people to Islam, and he went and did this, yet nowadays many people wait for a long time after they become committed to Islam before they reach the stage of calling others to Allaah, may He be glorified.
The Companions of Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), as a result of entering Islam, used to feel enmity towards the kuffaar, and they would disavow themselves of them and draw a clear line. When Thamaamah ibn Athaal (may Allaah be pleased with him), the chief of the people of al-Yamaamah, was taken prisoner, he was held in the mosque, and the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) told him about Islam. Then Allaah caused the light of Islam to shine in his heart, and he became Muslim. He went for ‘Umrah, and when he reached
Makkah, he told the kuffaar of Quraysh, “Not one grain of wheat will reach you from al-Yamaamah except with the permission of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).” (Reported by al-Bukhaari, Fath, 8/78).
This declaration of opposition to the kuffaar, imposition of economic sanctions and offer of all resources at his disposal to serve the cause of da’wah all took place immediately, because strong faith demands action.
Fear and panic when disaster strikes or problems arise. So you will see such a person shaking and losing his equilibrium, with no focus, staring wild-eyed and having no idea what to do when faced with calamity. He is ruled by his fears and can see no way out; he cannot face reality with a strong and steady heart. All of this is the result of weak faith, for if his faith was strong he would be steadfast and he would face the worst disasters with calmness and strength.
15. Excessive arguing and disputing. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said in a saheeh hadeeth: “
No people will go astray after having being guided except that they become argumentative.” (Reported by Ahmad in al-Musnad, 5/252; Saheeh al-Jaami’, 5633).
Arguing with no proof and for no good reason leads one far away from
the Straight Path, and most of people’s futile arguments nowadays are conducted without knowledge or guidance or (reference to) a Book giving light (i.e., the Qur’aan). We have sufficient motive to avoid futile arguments in the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him):
“I guarantee a house in the outskirts of Paradise to the one who forsakes argument even when he is in the right.” (Reported by Abu Dawood, 5/150; Saheeh al-Jaami’, 1464).
16. Attachment to this world and rejoicing in it. A person may be so attached to this world that he feels pain if he misses out on some share of it, such as money, power, authority, or housing. He feels that he is unfairly treated because he has not got what others have. He feels more stress when he sees a brother in Islam who has something of this world that he does not have, so he envies him (hasad) and wishes that he will lose
that blessing. This goes against eemaan, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “
Eeman and hasad do not exist together in the heart of the true slave.” (Reported by Abu Dawood, 5/150; Saheeh al-Jaami’, 1464).
He talks and thinks in a purely rational manner, devoid of the characteristics of faith. There is hardly any trace of a reference to the Qur’aan and Sunnah, or the words of the salaf (the early generations of Islam – may Allaah have mercy on them), in the way such a person speaks.
17. Going to extremes in the way one cares for oneself, in food, drink, clothing, housing and means of transportation. So you see these people showing excessive interest in luxuries, trying to be sophisticated, buying only the finest clothes, spending extravagant amounts on their choice of housing and spending too much time and money on such unnecessary adornments whilst their Muslim brothers are in the greatest need of that money. This carries on until they sink into the soft life of luxury which is forbidden, as is reported in the hadeeth of Mu’aadh ibn Jabal (may Allaah be pleased with him): when the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) sent him to Yemen, he advised him: “
Beware of luxury, for the slaves of Allaah do not live a life of luxury.” (Reported by Abu Na’eem in al-Hilyah, 5/155; Silsilat al-Saheehah, 353. A similar version was also reported by Ahmad in al-Musnad, 5/243).
Continue to Part-2:  Causes of weak faith

The Keys to Humility


Many of us, Islamic blog writers, students of knowledge, activists, khatibs, or any of the groups of people in between who’s Islamic activities are public affairs, find ourselves in a difficult situation. We know the importance of humility and know that it is constantly under attack.

From khutbah compliments, to blog comments, to proving a young brother or sister’s incorrect point of view to be incorrect and helping them understand a point of fiqh or arabic or ‘Aqidah – true humility is the part of our castles..

We take the steps towards being humble, and then…recognize to ourselves that we have taken these steps, thus causing us to become proud of ourselves. It is a vicious cycle. More knowledge, more wisdom…
more to lose in the battle for humility. And on top of this, how do we keep our “humility” from turning into a destruction of our self-confidence and sense of self worth?

Where is the balance? How do we keep from shows of self-demeaning: “brother, if you know me you’d know I was a pile of………” types of extreme responses to compliments.

How do we protect ourselves? How do we truly remove the pride from our hearts? Is hearing the Hadith about pride really sufficient? Is that enough fuel for us to do the job?

1. Remember why humility is important. 

The Prophet said: “No one who has an atom’s worth of pride in his/her heart will enter Jannah.”

Humility makes us beloved to Allah (SWT) and makes us kind with people. It allows us to enter Jannah. It allows us to live out our deen well, because not having an inflated opinion of ourselves allows us to accept mistakes, and move forward to correct them.

2. The classic advice of: “There are people who are more qualified than you” is good, but not comprehensive. 

We will discuss the good first – For anyone who has studied some arabic, quran, tajwid, or fiqh, you can rest assured, unless perhaps you are one of the few mujtahid-level ‘ulama alive today, that there are thousands of people out there, if not millions, who know more than you do. They are far more qualified in the deen, and many of them are younger than you. There are people more dedicated than you, more active than you, and smarter than you.

This should not dissuade us, but should bring us back to Earth.

Remember, Musa was not the least bit discouraged by his conversation with Al-Khidr. Rather, he went forward after this lesson, to build his nation into a great Ummah for the sake of Allah (swt) and establish the Shari’ah.

However, this by itself is not comprehensive. Because as many people as there might be who are more qualified than you, there will also be many who are less qualified. They will hear your khutbahs, speeches, articles, advices, and see your Islamic work and benefit. They will look up to you, ask you questions, and you will try to help them. You will teach tajwid, Quran, and many other things.

Thus, point 2 is not sufficient for us, and will still keep us in the vicious battle for our humility.

3. The comprehensive answer, often overlooked in this discussion, is simpler than we think, but easier said then done.

The answer, the key to humility – is an acknowledgment, a true, deep acknowledgment, that any accomplishment that you have ever made in your entire life of any kind, is NOTHING more than a grace and mercy of Allah (SWT) that you really have not done much to deserve.

Everything you have done, you could only do because He let you.

Everything you have gained, you only gained because He gave you.

When a beggar receives 10 dollars from a rich man, he does not go to the rich man and pretend that he has earned this money. Nor does he go into the streets haughtily and pretend that he himself is rich. His clothes, his hair, his countenance, testify to his true state.

Similarily, when we, the fuqara (the poor), have received such a charity from Allah, the Rich, of life, knowledge, deen, and rizq – our hearts and our actions testify to our true state as beggars. We thank Allah (SWT) that he hid that from the people such that people cannot see that we are just beggars. But on the Day of Judgement, that state will be easily seen if we do not rectify it.

So brothers and sisters, the key to humility is not found only in looking above you to examples of people who are better. Rather, it is looking to your Lord,and recognizing your state when placed before him.

It is in recognizing that the differences of human beings before Allah, are like a 4 yr old and a 4 yr and 1 month old arguing about who is older and thus, better.

All of this talk of humility comes down to this relationship with Allah (swt) at the end, and realizing what His Rububiyyah (Lordship) over you, really means.

Be humble with Allah (SWT) – that this Infinitely Knowledgeable Lord is always watching you, and humility with people will come. But if you try to be humble with people as the end and means, brushing off compliments and making false statements to try and seem humble, we will lose ourselves in our insincerity.

4. Lastly – do not let humility become a lack of self-confidence of source of self-degradation. 

Allah says:
“Wa la qad karramnaa bani Adam” – Verily, Indeed we have honored the Children of Adam”

Bani Adam is a mukarram creation. It is honored. Allah fashioned Adam Himself and blew the Spirit into Adam. We are honored by Allah with Islam and as human being. Do not brush off this honor, nor seek honor in anything else except Islam.

Recognize the balance in the first verse ever revealed:
“Read in the Name of Your Lord who created; created Mankind from a clinging piece of flesh” (96:1) and “He who taught Man by the Pen. Taught Man that which he did not know.”

See how Allah shows us an honor that we were created by Allah, our Lord, Himself! How special we should feel that we were fashioned by Allah personally. How honored that He (SWT) taught us and our father Adam what he did not even teach any other creation?

Then how Allah balances this with “a clinging piece of flesh” showing us the lowly origin of our creation.

So let us seek our humility not through external gestures, but through a relationship with Allah. Let us keep balance in our humility, that we remember we are honored, but that before Allah we are dust. And let us pray that Allah makes us better than what the people think we are.

Being Religious Without Being a Jerk!


“There is nothing that has gentleness in it except that it is beautified, and there is nothing that has harshness in it except that it makes it ugly. So be calm, O Aisha!”

The above words were spoken by our beloved Messenger ﷺ to his wife, `A’isha radi allahu `anha (may Allah be please with her). A group of people had passed by the Prophet ﷺ and our Mother `A’isha, and said to him: “As-sa’amu `alaykum” (death be upon you).”  It was a wordplay on “As-salaamu `alaykum (peace be upon you)”, with the intent of ridiculing the Prophet ﷺ. `A’isha (ra) became so angry that she rose up and began yelling at them that death should be upon them, and the curse of God, and so on.

At this, the Prophet ﷺ turned towards her, and spoke these words, telling her to calm down, and not to lose her composure, even in the face of personal insult. This man, our Messenger ﷺ, was the pillar of tranquility in an ocean of chaos. Our mother Aisha (ra), did this out of a pure, sincere, and unyielding love for the Prophet (saw). Not out of any arrogance or pride. For her it was an anger rooted in love, a desire to protect her Prophet from those who hated him. May Allah be pleased with her.

Unfortunately however, many of us react with harshness when faced with religious differences, especially WITHIN our own ummah – not out of love, but out of arrogance. When we examine ourselves today, especially those among us who are students of religious knowledge or believers striving to better ourselves, a tragic observation can often be made: Religiosity often turns people into jerks.
Many have witnessed this story: A young man or woman who used to be friendly, well-mannered, who treated people well, sadly turns into someone who shows mild annoyance upon meeting people who follow a different religious opinion. He shows anger when presented with arguments against his or her own point of view. Finally, he or she begins to pronounce judgment against others—pronouncing minor differences in opinion as proofs of disbelief.

When told to calm down, to stop being judgmental—the response comes in one of many flavors:

  • “Brother, I am enjoining the good and forbidding the evil!”
  • “We are defending the Sunnah!”
  • “When people are harsh against the Sunnah, we will be harsh in defending it!”

And so on.

Over what kinds of issues? Not the serious lack of counseling services in the community. Not the difficulty that our youth are having in protecting their faith from intellectual attack. Not the issues of domestic abuse, poverty, family breakups or homelessness afflicting non-Muslims and Muslims around us.

But the length of our pants and whether or not they are above our ankles, the lengths of our beards, etc. Perhaps one’s adherence or lack thereof to a group or organization. What we think about pseudo-philosophical concepts about the essence of God’s attributes.  Such meanness and harshness occurs not over what is physically affecting people, but over a disagreement between opinions in our minds. Over varying textual interpretations that result in different legal opinions or a creedal points unknown to the majority of the world’s Muslims.

Why does this happen to us when almost nothing is more important in our religion than the subjugation of our egos to the Power and Oneness of God?

The Remedy

“Islam takes us and throws us so we fall totally in love with The Creator. Yet, somehow some of us turn it into a way to look down upon the creation.”

This happens because somewhere along the line in striving to love God, the ego—the innermost part of our soul which continuously wishes to be glorified and exalted over others—made our religiosity a means of doing just that. The religion exists to crush the ego, and enslave it towards the worship of its Creator.

When we say AllahuAkbar (God is the Greatest), the true meaning of this, when one explores Arabic grammar, is “God is the Greatest Above All Things”—including our loves, our hates, our desires, our weaknesses, our dreams, our hopes, our very essences. Success in reaching our desires is only through His permission, and the power to overcome our weaknesses is only through His Mercy. This phrase is formulated to remind us of Allah’s greatness over ourselves and over every element of our lives. It acknowledges the overwhelming power that is Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala (exalted is He).

On the ego’s path to enslavement and the realization of recognizing Allah (swt) alone as the sole object of adoration and love, our ego sought a way out so it would not have to undergo such tribulation and destruction; so that it would not have to give up its position as the one that is praised and feels valued.

That ego essentially hijacks the religiosity of the individual and takes it on a detour. What is that detour? Rather than letting Islam be Islam and allowing the soul to get lost in the wonders of Allah’s power, the limitless nature of His love, the magnanimous breadth of His Mercy, the immeasurable depth of His knowledge, the care and affection that He showers upon His creation—the ego detours the soul into LOVING ITSELF.

When the soul begins to love itself, it becomes dissatisfied with not only God, but with God’s creation. It sees its own knowledge, opinion, and worldview as superior to all others. In order to maintain its false notion of being humble, it will even fake humility to those on the outside: “I’m nobody, I’m not knowledgeable”—while secretly harboring contempt for all those who follow different opinions or ideas about Islam. It is easy to recognize this tendency in ourselves. It happens when our religious discourse, our religious speech, and our religious vocabulary become less about loving God, adoring his Messenger ﷺ, bettering ourselves and more about creedal disagreements, legal fine points, and how one group is bad or another is good.

When religion becomes more about how one person does not practice the way that pleases us  (even if we are correct in expressing the opinion of orthodox Islam) than about how we can please God, the religion has essentially turned into a tool to make us feel better about ourselves.

This does not mean we should turn off legitimate criticism in religious discourse. Enjoining the good and forbidding evil means that we must take an active interest in our communities, and in striving to develop our communities and our religious practices in a way that is healthy, natural, and allows Muslims from all backgrounds to be included and non-Muslims to feel welcome.

Rather, it is time we examine our deeper motives and feelings when we criticize and put forth negativity: “Am I criticizing and putting forth negativity because my criticism and the way I am putting it forth will actively help to prevent harm and bring benefit? Or am I criticizing to ridicule, make myself feel better, and make others see me as superior?”

Answering this question correctly and being sincere is the difference between the religious jerk and a servant of God.

Written by Brother Abdul Sattar Ahmed [www.suhaibwebb.com]

The Prophet’s Methods for Correcting People’s Mistakes Part-1


Introduction

Bismillaah il-Rahmaan il-Raheem

In the Name of Allaah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Praise be to Allaah, Lord of the Worlds, Master of the Day of Judgement, God of the first and the last, Sustainer of heaven and earth, and peace and blessings be upon His trustworthy Prophet, the Teacher of mankind, sent as a Mercy to the worlds.

Teaching people is one of the greatest good deeds whose benefits spread to others. It is the daiy’ahs’ and educators’ share of the heritage of the Prophets and Messengers.

“Allaah and the angels, and even the ant in its nest and the whale in the sea will pray for the one who teaches people the ways of good.” (Reported by al-Tirmidhi; Sunan al-Tirmidhi, Ahmad Shaakir edn., no. 2685. Abu ‘Eesa said, this is a saheeh ghareeb hasan hadeeth).

There are different types and ways of teaching, with different means and methods, one of which is correcting mistakes. Correcting mistakes is a part of education; they are like inseparable twins.

Dealing with and correcting mistakes is also a part of sincerity in religion (naseehah) which is a duty on all Muslims. The connection between this and the concept of enjoining what is good and forbidding what is evil, which is also a duty, is quite obvious (but we should note that the area of mistakes is broader than the area of evil (munkar), so a mistake may or may not be evil as such).

Correcting mistakes also formed a part of the wahy (revelation) and the methodology of the Qur’aan. The Qur’aan brought commands and prohibitions, approvals and denunciations and correction of mistakes – even those on the part of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him). So it included rebukes and pointing out of mistakes, for example (interpretation of the meaning):

“(The Prophet) frowned and turned away,

Because there came to him the blind man [‘Abd-Allaah ibn Umm Maktoom, whilst he was preaching to one or some of the chiefs of Quraysh],

But what could tell you that perchance he might become pure (from sins)?

Or that he might receive admonition, and that the admonition might profit him?

As for him who thinks himself self-sufficient,

To him you attend;

What does it matter to you if he will not become pure (from disbelief, you are only a Messenger, your duty is to convey the Message of Allaah).

But as to him who came to you running, And is afraid (of Allaah and His Punishment), Of him you are neglectful and divert your attention to another.” [‘Abasa 80:1-10]

“And remember when you (Muhammad) said to him (Zayd ibn Haarithah – the freed slave of the Prophet) on whom Allaah has bestowed Grace (by guiding him to Islam) and you (too) have done a favour (by freeing him), ‘Keep your wife to yourself and fear Allaah.’ But you did hide in yourself (what Allaah had already made known to you – i.e. that He will give her to you in marriage) that which Allaah will make mainfest, you did fear the people whereas Allaah had a better right that you should fear Him…” [al-Ahzaab 33:38]

“Not for you (O Muhammad) is the decision; whether He turns in mercy to (pardons) them or punishes them; verily, they are the zaalimoon (polytheists, disobedient, wrong-doers, etc.).” [Aal ‘Imraan 3:128]

Qur’aan was also revealed to correct the mistakes of some of the Sahaabah in some situations. When Haatib ibn Abi Balta’ah (may Allaah be pleased with him) made the mistake of writing to the kuffaar of Quraysh and informing them of the direction in which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was headed on a military campaign against them, Allaah revealed the words (interpretation of the meaning):

“O you who believe! Take not My enemies and your enemies (i.e., disbelievers and polytheists, etc.) as friends, showing affection towards them, while they have disbelieved  in what has come to you of the truth, and have driven out the Messenger and yourselves (from your homeland) because you believe in Allaah your Lord! If you have come forth to strive in My Cause and to seek My Good Pleasure, (then take not these disbelievers and polytheists, etc., as your friends). You show friendship to them in secret, while I am All-Aware of what you conceal and what you reveal. And whosoever of you (Muslims) does that, then indeed he has gone (far) astray, (away) from the Straight Path.” [al-Mumtahinah 60:1]

Concerning the mistake made by the archers at the battle of Uhud, who left the position where the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) had commanded them to stay, Allaah revealed the words (interpretation of the meaning):

“… until (the moment) you lost your courage and fell to disputing about the order, and disobeyed after He showed you (of the booty) which you love. Among you are some that desire this world and some that desire the Hereafter…” [Aal- ‘Imraan 3:152]

When the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) stayed away from his wives in order to discipline them, and some people spread rumours that he had divorced them, Allaah revealed the words (interpretation of the meaning):

“When there comes to them some matter touching (public) safety or fear, they make it known (among the people), if only they had referred it to the Messenger or to those charged with authority among them, the proper investigators would have understood it from them (directly)…”  [al-Nisa’ 4:83]

When some of the Muslims failed to migrate from Makkah to Madeenah with no legitimate excuse, Allaah revealed the words (interpretation of the meaning):

“Verily! As for those whom the nagels take (in death) while they are wronging themselves (as they stayed among the disbelievers even though emigration was obligatroy for them), they (angels) say (to them): ‘In what (condition) were you?’ They reply: ‘We were weak and oppressed on earth.’ They (angels) say: ‘Was not the earth of Allaah spacious enough for you to emigrate therein?’ …” [al-Nisa’ 4:97]

When some of the Sahaabah believed and repeated the rumours of the munaafiqeen accusing ‘Aa’ishah of something she was innocent of, Allaah revealed aayaat concerning this lie, including (interpretation of the meaning):

“Had it not been for the Grace of Allaah and His Mercy unto you in this world and in the Hereafter, a great torment would have touched you for that whereof you had spoken. When you were propagating it with your tongues and uttering with your mouths that whereof you had no knowledge, you counted it a little thing, while with Allaah it was very great.” [al-Noor 24:14]

Then Allaah said (interpretation of the meaning):

“And why did you not, when you heard it, say – ‘It is not right for us to speak of this. Glory be to You (O Allaah), this is a great lie’? Allaah forbids you from it and warns you not to repeat the like of it forever, if you are believers.” [al-Noor 24:16-17]

When some of the Sahaabah argued in the presence of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and raised their voices, Allaah revealed (interpretation of the meaning):

“O you who believe! Do not put (yourselves) forward before Allaah and His Messenger, and fear Allaah. Verily! Allaah is All-Hearing, All-Knowing. O you who believe! Raise not your voices above the voice of the Prophet, nor speak aloud to him in talk as you speak aloud to one another, lest your deeds may be rendered fruitless while you perceive not.” [al-Hujuraat 49:1-2]

When the caravan came at the time of the Friday khutbah, and some of the people left the khutbah and dispersed to engage in trade, Allaah revealed the words:

“And when they see some merchandise or some amusement, they disperse headlong to it, and leave you (Muhammad) standing [while delivering the Friday khutbah]. Say: ‘That which Allaah has is better than any amusement or merchandise! And Allaah is the Best of Providers.’” [al-Jumu’ah 62:11]

Many other examples also indicate the importance of correcting mistakes and not keeping quiet about them.

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was guided by the Light of his Lord in following the principle of denouncing evil and correcting mistakes with no compromise. From this and other reports the scholars (may Allaah have mercy on them) derived the principle: it is not permitted for the Prophet to delay speaking up and explaining mistakes at the appropriate time.”

Understanding the Prophet’s methodology in dealing with the mistakes of the people he met is of great importance, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was guided by his Lord, and his words and deeds were supported by the wahy, and confirmed or corrected as needed.

His methods are wiser and more efficacious, and using his approach is the best way to get people to respond positively. If the one who is in a position to guide and teach others adopts these methods and this approach, his efforts will be successful. Following the method and approach of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) also involves following his example, for he is the best example for us, and this will lead us to a great reward from Allaah, if our intention is sincere.

Knowing the methods of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) exposes the failure of the man-made methodology – which is followed everywhere on this earth – and proves to the followers of that methodology that it is a failure. Much of it is clearly a deviation that is based on corrupt theories such as absolute freedom, or it is derived from false heritages such a blind imitation of one’s fathers and forefathers.

We must point out that the practical application of this methodology in real life relies heavily on ijtihaad (studying the situation and attempting to determine the best approach) to a great extent. This involves selecting the best methods for a particular situation. Whoever understands people’s nature will be able to notice similarities between real life situations and situations described in the texts, so he will be able to choose the most appropriate method from among the methods of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).

This book is an attempt to study the methods of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) in dealing with mistakes made by people of different levels and backgrounds, among those who lived with him and with whom he interacted. I ask Allaah to make it successful and free of mistakes, to benefit my Muslim brothers and me through it, for He is in control of all things and He is able to do this, and He is the Guide to the Straight Path.

to be continue in Part-2, in topic:

Points to be noted when dealing with mistakes

Our Moral Crisis


By Shaykh Muhammad Al-`Abdah

How hurtful it is to hear a Muslim complain about the state of some of his brothers, especially those men of Da`wah. The brother mentions their rigidity and in being far removed from implementing Islam’s commands of care, leniency, soft speech, and actual compassion. The brother continues: “I entered hospital, yet was not visited by the brothers I know, but rather by my work colleagues who are ordinary Muslims and moreover, they offered to assist me in all other matters!”

We constantly hear and see how the people of falsehood help each other and those whom they desire to fall under their influence. Yet Muslims are the ones ordered to adhere to the noblest of manners and finest of behaviours, and therefore should not be excelled in this field.

It is worth remembering the hadith regarding the prostitute who gave water to the thirsty dog on a hot day and was subsequently forgiven by Allah and the hadith speaking of the woman who will be punished for imprisoning a cat. Similarly, when the punishment of the alcohol drinker was being inflicted on one man, another cursed him and was then rebuked by the Messenger of Allah sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam, “Do not curse him, for he loves Allah and His Messenger.” And this hadith reminds one of Imam Abu Hanifah’s story with his drunken neighbour who entered prison and was bailed by the Imam resulting in the neighbour’s sincere repentance.

The likely reason for this rigidity and uncouth behaviour by some of the Callers to Islam is their ignorance of the Messenger’s way in uniting the hearts. These Callers when viewing those negligent in practising some voluntary acts of worship might treat them with discourtesy. They might only greet them with a faint voice, full of indifference, not care for them, and not attempting to bring them close through the polite word or good service in order for their hearts to incline to the Sunnah and its people. Indeed the one who looks down at his neglectful brothers suffers from a more severe malady that is self-fancy and pride. This same proud group is often found falling into the detestable backbiting by calling it criticism and evaluation, and where the shortcomings of a Muslim are talked about whilst they probably do not even exist as most of them were derived from mere delusions.

After all that, haven’t we the right to regard a part of our crisis as a moral one? It is a part of our general decline, but without its awareness, we will not be able to find a way out !!!

Keep Away From Mutual Enmity


By Shaykh Muhammad al-Ghazali

When a quarrel intensifies, when its roots go deeper, its thorns become branches and branches increase in number, then the freshness of the fruits of faith is adversely affected. Softness, sympathy, satisfaction and peace, which are encouraged by the Islamic teachings, receive a setback. Performance of worship loses its righteousness, while the self get no benefit from it.

Many a time mutual quarrels perturb the persons who claim to be wise. When this happens, they take recourse to lowly and superficial things, and sometimes indulge in dangerous acts which only increase difficulties and bring troubles. When a man is displeased, his eyes become prejudiced and ignore the camel and object to gnat. Such eyes do not appreciate the beauty of the peacock, for they only see its ugly feet and claws. If a slight defect is present, it turns the molehill into a mountain. And sometimes the internal rancour and jealousy affect them so badly that no hesitation is felt in inventing imaginary stories. Islam disapproves of all these manifestations of ill feeling and advises to abstain from them. It declares their avoidance as the most virtuous form of worship.

The Prophet said: “Listen, may I not tell you something more important than salat, fasting and charity?” The people requested him to do so. He said: “To keep the mutual relationship on the right footing, because the defect in the mutual relationship is a thing which shaves a thing clean. I do not mean that it shaves the hair, but that it shaves (removes) the religion.” (at-Tirmidhi)

Many a time Satan is not able to persuade wise men to worship idols, but since he is very keen on misguiding and ruining men, he manages to succeed in driving them away from God, so much so that these wise men become more indifferent in respecting the rights of God than the idolaters themselves. The best method adopted by the devil for this purpose is to sow the seeds of enmity in the hearts of the people. When this enmity develops into a fire and open hostilities result, he enjoys the scene. This fire burns man’s present and future into ashes and totally destroys their relationship and virtues.

The Messenger of Allah said: “The Satan has been disappointed that he would not be worshipped in the Arabian Peninsula, but he has not been disappointed from kindling the fire of fighting among the people.” (Muslim)

It means that when wickedness takes roots in the hearts, when people start hating love and brotherhood, and when these are destroyed, people then revert to cruelty and enmity, and break all those relations and links which Allah has commanded to be kept; thus spreading corruption on this earth.

The Muslim Is Friendly And Likeable


By Dr. Muhammad Ali Al-Hashimi

The Muslim who truly understands the teachings of his religion is gentle, friendly and likeable. He mixes with people and gets along with them. This is something which should be a characteristic of the Muslim who understands that keeping in touch with people and earning their trust is one of the most important duties of the Muslim. It is an effective means of conveying the message of truth to them, and exposing them to its moral values, because people only listen to those whom they like, trust and accept. Hence there are many hadiths which commend the type of person who is friendly and liked by others. Such a person is one of those chosen ones who are beloved by the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) and will be closest to him on the Day of Resurrection:

“Shall I not tell you who among you is most beloved to me and will be closest to me on the Day of Resurrection?” He repeated it two or three times, and they said, “Yes, O Messenger of Allah (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam).”  He said: “Those of you who are the best in attitude and character.” [Reported by Ahmad and its isnad is jayyid]

Some reports add: “Those who are down to earth and humble, who get along with others and with whom others feel comfortable.”

One of the attributes of the believer is that he gets along with others and others feel comfortable with him. He likes people and they like him. If he is not like this, then he will not be able to convey the message or achieve anything of significance. Whoever is like that has no goodness in him, as in the hadith:

“The believer gets along with people and they feel comfortable with him. There is no goodness in the one who does not get along with people and with whom they do not feel comfortable. ” [Reported by Abmad and al-Bazar; the men of Ahmad’s isnad are rijal as-sahih]

The Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) set the highest example of good behaviour towards people. He was skilful in softening their hearts and called them to follow him in word and deed. He demonstrated how to reach people’s hearts and win their love and admiration.

He was always cheerful and easy-going, never harsh. When he came to any gathering, he would sit wherever there was a free space, and he told others to do likewise. He treated everyone equally, so that no one who was present in a gathering would feel that anyone else was receiving preferential treatment. If anyone came to him and asked for something, he would give it to them, or at least respond with kind words. His good attitude extended to everyone and he was like a father to them. The people gathered around him were truly equal, distinguished only by their level of taqwa.  They were humble, respecting their elders, showing compassion to young ones, giving priority to those in need and taking care of strangers.

The Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) never used to disappoint anyone who came to ask from him. There are three characteristics that he did not possess: he was not argumentative, he did not talk too much, and he did not concern himself with matters that were not his business.

There are three things that he never did to people: he never criticized any one, he never said “Shame on you!” to anyone, and he never looked for anyone’s faults. He never said anything but that for which he hoped to earn reward. When he spoke, the people around him would listen earnestly, sitting still as if there were birds on their heads. When he was silent, then they would speak. They never argued with one another in his presence.

They would smile at whatever he smiled at, and would be impressed by whatever impressed him. He would be patient with a stranger who might be harsh in his requests or questions, and his Companions would ask the stranger to speak gently. He said, “If you see someone in need, then help him.” He never accepted praise except from someone who was thanking him for a favour, and he never cut off anyone who was speaking; he would wait until the person indicated that he had finished, or stood up.

`A’ishah tells us that he used to be cautious of the worst type of people, and he would speak gently to them and treat them well. A man sought permission to enter upon him and he said, “Let him in, what a bad brother of his tribe he is!”

When the man came in, he spoke gently to him. `A’ishah said: “O Messenger of Allah (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam), you said what you said, then you spoke gently to him.” He (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) said, “O `A’ishah, the worst of people is the one whom people avoid (or are gentle towards) because they fear his slander.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

The true Muslim follows in the footsteps of his Prophet in his dealings with all people, whether they are good or bad, so that he is liked and accepted by all people.