The Importance of Manners in Islam
Q. Do you know what was the main mission of the Prophet Muhammad
A. To perfect the manners of the people, as mentioned in one hadeeth "I have been
sent only for the purpose of perfecting good morals." (Bukhari)
The Definition of MANNERS:
According to Wikipedia:
· In sociology, manners are the unenforced standards of conduct which demonstrate that a person is proper, caring, non-grouchy, polite, and refined. They are like laws in that they codify or set a standard for human behavior, but they are unlike laws in that there is no formal system for punishing transgressions, the main informal "punishment" being social disapproval. They are a kind of norm. What is considered "mannerly" is highly susceptible to change with time, geographical location, social stratum, occasion, and other factors.
· A lady is a term frequently used for a woman who follows proper manners; the term gentleman is used as a male counterpart; though these terms are also often used for members of a particular social class.
A. The Importance of Manners
A lot of scholars have mentioned that manners are more important than the regular physical types of worship (prayers, charity, fasting or even Hajj (Pilgrimage)).
Scholars also said that the above forms of worship are all teaching us how to obtain good manners; they support their argument by several different verses from the Holy Quran or the hadeeths (teachings of the Prophet Muhammad PBUH):
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"And establish regular Prayer: for Prayer restrains from shameful and unjust deeds" [29:45]
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"Take, [O, Muhammad], from their wealth a charity by which you purify them and cause them increase, and invoke [Allah 's blessings] upon them " [9:103]
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"For Hajj are the months well known. If any one undertakes that duty therein, Let there be no obscenity, nor wickedness, nor wrangling in the Hajj. And whatever good ye do, (be sure) God knoweth it." [2:197]
When any one of you gets up in the morning in the state of fasting, he should neither use obscene language nor do any act of ignorance. And if anyone slanders him or quarrels with him, he should say: "I am fasting, I am fasting." (Muslim, 2563)
The majority of the Muslims nowadays are mainly one of two types, either focusing on different forms of worship, or, focusing on having good morals and manners. However, this is NOT Islam! Islam teaches us to have both and that is quite clear from so many different Quranic verses, for instance:
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"The believers must (eventually) win through, Those who humble themselves in their prayers, Who avoid vain talk." [23:1-3]
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"And the servants of the Most Merciful are those who walk upon the earth easily, and when the ignorant address them [harshly], they say [words of] peace [25:63]
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” So woe to those who pray, [But] who are heedless of their prayer, Those who make show [of their deeds], And withhold [simple] assistance." [107:4-7]
C. Selections of some of the manners that the Prophet PBUH has taught us
* Making peace among people: "Doing justice between two men is charity, and assisting a man to ride an animal or to load his luggage on it is charity; and a good word is charity, every step which one takes towards the mosque is charity, and removing harmful things from the way is charity." [Bukhari]
* Kindness to ones wife: “You will never spend anything seeking thereby the Face of Allah, but you will be rewarded for it, even (the food) that you put in your wife’s mouth."[Bukhari 56]
* Being good to neighbors: "By Allah, he is not a believer! By Allah, he is not a believer! By Allah, he is not a believer." It was asked, "Who is that, O Messenger of Allah?" He said, "One whose neighbor does not feel safe from his evil." [Bukhari].
* Guarding Secrets: "The most evil of the people to Allah on the Day of Resurrection will be the man who consorts with his wife and then publicizes her secret." [Muslim]
* Politeness in Speech: "It is also a charity to utter a good word." [Bukhari]
* Honoring the Guest & kin’s: "He who believes in Allah and the Last Day, let him show hospitality to his guest; and he who believes in Allah and the Last Day, let him maintain good relation with kin's; and he who believes in Allah and the Last Day, let him speak good or remain silent." [Bukhari]
* Treating Servants: Anas (the servant of the Prophet PBUH) says: "I served the holy Prophet for ten years. He never said 'Uf (expressing dissatisfaction), nor did he ever ask me why I did this or did not do that. [Muslim]
Muhammad PBUH taught us that all humans were entitled to the same rights and privileges. "People are as equal as the teeth of a comb,"
* Being Generous to all creatures: "No Muslim plants a tree or crop, and its fruit is eaten by birds, people or animals, except that it will be regarded as charity for him." (Bukhari)
* Being Humble & Anti-racist: “He who observes humility God will make him so exalted that, ultimately, he will attain the highest grade in Paradise.”
"There is no honor for a white man over a black man, or for an Arab over a non-Arab except in piety"
* Selflessness (Ethaar): It means, giving preference to others over yourself and considering their happiness and welfare before your own.
“None of you believes until he wishes for his brother what he wishes for himself.”
D. The rewards & blessings of having good manners
Being amongst the best in this world
"The best blessing that a person can be given in this life is manners."
"Mankind has not been given anything better than good manners."
"A person can reach the level of a person who prays all night and fasts all day just
because of his good manners."
"The people (or the Mu'mins) who have perfected their eman (faith) most perfectly,
are those who are best in manners."
"The best of the Mu'mineen (the believers) are the ones who are best in their
"The best of you are those of you who are best to their wives."
Pleasing Allah SWT
"Allah is beautiful and loves beauty, and He loves noble manners (ma'ali manners) and He hates, he despises lowly characteristics."
Heavy deeds in the scale on the Day of Judgment
"The heaviest aspect, the heaviest matter [that will help a believer] that will be in the Meezaan (scale), on the scales on the Day of Judgment, is good manners."
Being close to the Prophet PBUH on the Day of Judgment
"Those of you who will be closest to me on the Day of Judgment will be those who have the best manners." "And the people who are the most hated by me and the ones who are the furthest from me in the Hereafter are those who have the worst manners."
Someone asked the Prophet PBUH, "What is the one characteristic that will cause the most amounts of people to enter Paradise?" What is the one characteristic that will cause the most number of people to enter Paradise?" The Prophet PBUH responded, "To have the taqwa (fear) of Allah and to have good manners."
E. The Prophet PBUH prayers
* The Prophet PBUH used to supplicate: "Allahumma inni a`udhu bika min munkaratil-akhlaqi, wal-a`mali, wal-ahwa`i
(O Allah! I seek refuge in You from undesirable manners, deeds, and aspirations).''[At-Tirmidhi]
* "O Allah, as You have beautified my image, so beautify my morals"
F. Can a person really change his manners / behaviors?
Definitely, and the biggest proof are the companions of the Prophet Muhammad PBUH, before entering to Islam, they were 'living animals'; they used to burry their daughters alive! They were very harsh, never assisted the elders, women, the children as it was a sign of manhood to be harsh. The question is how to change?
"Ye have indeed in the Apostle of God a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for any one whose hope is in God and the Final Day, and who engages much in the Praise of God." [33:21]
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