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'I Have Been Sent to Perfect Good Manners' - I

Monday 26/12/2011

The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), was the epitome of graciousness, courtesy and good breeding. His character and manners were pleasing and worthy of emulation, and his behavior more so.This was one of the qualities of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), Allah The Almighty Himself stated in the Quran (which means): {And indeed, you are upon a noble conduct, an exemplary manner} [Quran, 68:4]

In defending His Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), from the spurious allegations of the polytheists of the Quraysh, one of the first things Allah The Almighty mentions is his good manners and noble character. Furthermore, the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), said: "The only reason I have been sent is to perfect good manners." [Al-Bukhari, Ahmad] In this Hadeeth (narration), we realize the great significance of having good manners that complement one’s character and values.
Some of the beautiful manners that Islam endorses in Muslims are:
·        Showing kindness and courtesy towards others
There are numerous verses in the Quran that enjoin having good manners and treating others well. Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {Worship Allah and associate nothing with Him, and to parents do good, and to relatives, orphans, the needy, the near neighbor, the neighbor farther away, the companion at your side, the traveler, and those whom your right hands possess. Indeed, Allah does not like those who are self-deluding and boastful.} [Quran, 4:36] Everyone should benefit from one’s kindness, good companionship and benevolence, not just one’s peers and age group, but also one’s parents, relatives, the poor, the orphans; even some stranger who is one’s companion while travelling.
·        Abandoning useless talk and vulgar language
Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {And tell My servants to say that which is best…} [Quran, 17:53] A Muslim should utter good words, not spew shameful and off-putting language. ‘Adullaah ibn ‘Amr, may Allah be pleased with him, said, "The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) never used bad language; neither a 'Faahish nor a Mutafahhish. He used to say: 'The best amongst you are those who have the best manners and character.'[Al-Bukhari] He,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), also said: “…anybody who believes in Allah and the Last Day should talk what is good or keep quiet. (i.e. abstain from all kinds of evil and dirty talk).” [Al-Bukhari]
·        Being humble and shunning arrogance
Allah The Almighty describes His servants as those who walk with humbleness on earth, not showing arrogance or superciliousness towards others. He Says (what means): {And the servants of the Most Merciful are those who walk upon the earth easily…}[Quran, 25:63]This is a characteristic of the true believers. Allah The Almighty hates arrogance and pride in all its forms.
In addition, there are many Hadeeths (narrations) that denounce arrogance and pride and encourage Muslims to cultivate humbleness in themselves. These include:
·        "He will not enter Paradise who has even a speck of pride in his heart," [Muslim]
·        "Shall I inform you of the people of Paradise? They are every weak and humble person, if he takes an oath to Allah, it will be fulfilled. Shall I inform you of the people of the Fire? They are every cruel, violent and proud person." [Al-Bukhari and others]
Thus, we find that having good manners is one of the themes found continually throughout the Quran and Sunnah (Prophetic tradition), which doubly proves and signifies their importance. The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), repeatedly advised his Companions, may Allah be pleased with them, to keep refining their manners:
·        The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ): “Be mindful of Allah, wherever you are, and follow up any bad deed with a good one to wipe it out, and act towards other with an excellent character.” [At-Tirmithi]
·        The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), said: "Do not underestimate anything among the good deeds, even if it is only to meet your brother with a friendly face." [Muslim]
·        The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "If someone curses you or tries to find fault with you, in a matter that does not exist in you," in other words, he accuses you of having a fault that you do not have, "do not find fault with him in a matter that he does have." The Prophetic guidance here is that even if someone lies about you and slanders you, do not point out the mistakes he himself has. He,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), went on to say: "Leave him, because the evil of that deed will be against him, and the good will be for you."
·        In another Hadeeth, the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), said: "Do not ever curse any person."

'I Have Been Sent to Perfect Good Manners' - III

 

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