By Hadrat Mawlānā Muhammad Saleem Dhorat hafizahullāh
The Prophet Muhammad sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam has stated:
A (complete and perfect) Muslim is one from whose tongue and hand people are safe. (An-Nasa‘ī)
To be a perfect Muslim it is necessary to fulfil all of the requirements of Islām. One of these is to ensure that one does not cause harm to another human being, Muslim or non-Muslim. This is an extremely important component of the teachings of Islām.
In the above hadīth, the Prophet sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam’s use of the word ‘tongue’ encompasses all forms of speech, whilst the word ‘hand’ represents all physical actions. It means therefore, that no one can be a perfect Muslim unless the rest of Allāh ta‘ālā’s bondsmen are safe from any harm originating from him.
Someone who performs salāh, pays zakāh, observes fasts, recites the Qur’ān in abundance and gives plenty in sadaqah cannot be classed a perfect believer if at the same time he also causes people heartache through his words or actions. A person who, without any valid reason, causes hurt to another human being is a Muslim, but not a perfect or complete Muslim.
The religion of Islām branches out into five major areas: ‘aqā’id (beliefs), ‘ibādāt(worship), akhlāq (morals and character), mu‘āmalāt (transactions) and mu‘āsharah(etiquettes of social life). The branch of mu‘āsharah, or social etiquettes, is based on the above-mentioned saying of the Prophet sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam. In today’s climate, there can be no more effective method of popularising Islām than the world’s Muslims embracing this branch of faith and living in accordance with it. If Muslims adopt the Islāmic etiquettes of social interaction, it will dispel the many misunderstandings created about Islām and Muslims, making it much easier for non-Muslims to understand and come closer to Islām.
Adopting the Islāmic way of dealing with people gives rise to occasions when a Muslim’s compassionate nature stands out. Intelligent people invariably pick up on such behaviour and become curious as to why, for example, a Muslim in a position to say or do something hurtful to another person does not do so. A time eventually comes when they enquire from the Muslim in question, presenting an opportunity for him to explain that he was only doing what the Prophet Muhammad sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam taught, and that it is a major principle of Islām that no human being should be caused undue distress.
This is an extract from the booklet ‘Islām: A Message of Mercy’ published by
the Islāmic Da’wah Academy.
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