(Sir Iftikhar ul Haq)
Hadith 1-20 Paper 2
CIE INTERNATIONAL EXAMINATION
‘Religion is sincerity.’ We said: ‘To whom?’ The Prophet said: ‘To Allah, his Book, his Messenger, the leaders of the Muslims and to their common people.’
- Islam demands sincere and genuine faith.
- This sincerity is needed in the fundamental beliefs as well as towards the leaders and the members of the community.
- This means strong belief in Tawhid (oneness of God), the divine message of the Quran and the messenger of God who conveyed this Message to us.
- Also, the leader of the community, who follows the Quran and Sunnah, should be sincerely followed:
- “And obey God and obey the Messenger and those charged with authority among you.” (4:59)
- Finally, Muslims should believe in respecting and caring for the fellows in the community.
- Belief in Tawhid, Quran and the last Messenger is demonstrated by following the eternal guidance of the Quran and Sunnah.
- Muslims should observe the five pillars of Islam:
- “And establish regular prayer and pay the charity tax”
- As for cooperating with the leader of the community, Muslims should remember the speech of Abu Bakr on his election as caliph:
- “Help me if I am in the right, set me right if I am in the wrong”
- Similarly, sincerity towards fellows should be expressed by being kind, polite and respectful to them.
None of you believes until he wants for his brother what he wants for himself.
- Muslims are bonded together with common faith:
- “Believers are a single brotherhood” (49:10) this bond of fraternity has been established by God Himself, and so, all Muslims should make it part of their faith.
- A heart without love and care for the fellow Muslims is devoid of true faith, & so, genuine faith is linked with affection for the other members of the community.
- “None of you believes” refers to imperfect faith, and not absence of faith. This means that any believer might fall prey to a lack of love for fellows.
- Muslims should negate selfishness, promote spirit of sacrifice and love for the fellow Muslims
- Should develop a sense of collective welfare and make efforts to ensure comfort and benefits for others as much as for himself:
- “It is more beneficial for one to give his land free to his brother than to charge him a fixed rental” and:
- “That you desire for others that what you desire for yourself”
- True believers should not look down upon others and should not taunt them or call them by offensive nick names.
- They are also not supposed to break ties with fellow brothers and should take initiative in re-establishing good relations.
Let him who believes in Allah and the Last Day either speak good or keep silent, and let him who believes in Allah and the Last Day be generous to his neighbour, and let him who believes in Allah and the Last Day be generous to his guest.
- Power of speech not only a great bounty by God but also a means of expressing faith:
- “He has created man. He has taught him the speech (and intelligence),” (55:3, 4)
- With this belief, a believer should learn, “To keep quiet is better than telling a bad thing”
- Several evils, transgression and indecencies originate form misuse of the tongue.
- Similarly, faith is also linked with good social conduct because Muslims believe that observance of acts of worship is one aspect and being kind to others is another aspect of demonstrating faith.
- Muslims should avoid all indecencies : “Believers will surely get through ………who avoid vain talk” (23:1-2)
- They should show hospitality towards those around them e.g., neighbors & guests: “He is not a true believer who eats to his fill but his neighbor sleeps hungry” and
- “Whoever believes in God and the last day should not harm his neighbor, and whoever believes in God should honour his guest”
- The Prophet set several examples of hospitality, towards both Muslims and non-Muslims.
A man asked the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace): Do you think that if I perform the obligatory prayers, fast in Ramadan, treat as lawful that which is lawful and treat as forbidden that which is forbidden, and do nothing further, I shall enter paradise? He said: Yes
- This Hadith sums up the secret of entry to Paradise.
- Prayer and fasting are the two of the five pillars on which is erected the building of faith:
- “He who gives up prayer has indeed disbelieved.”
- “What stands between a believer and disbelief is abandonment of regular prayer”
- “The fast is a shield (against Satan).”
- These two pillars train believers to believe in the importance of the lawful and the unlawful.
- “…….he (the Prophet) allows them as lawful what is good and prohibits them from what is bad” (7:157)
- Muslims should be regular and punctual in daily prayer as it keeps them from evils:
- “Verily, regular prayer refrains from shameful and unjust deeds” (29:45)
- They should fast in Ramadan to promote self-restraint
- Observance of both these trains them to tell right from wrong and earn by Halal (permitted) means while shunning all Haram (forbidden) actions:
- “So take what the Messenger gives you and refrain form what he prohibits you” (59:7)
- Such self training will ensure individual and collective welfare in this world and the Hereafter.
Every person’s every joint must perform a charity every day the sun comes up: to act justly between two people is a charity; to help a man with his mount, lifting him onto it or hoisting up his belongings onto it is a charity; a good word is a charity; every step you take to prayers is a charity; and removing a harmful thing from the road is a charity.
- Muslims should consider all their physical powers as a gift of God
- This will enable them to express gratitude to God by helping fellow Muslims in daily matters
- They should consider such acts as charity e.g., settling disputes of the people and removing harmful objects from the roads.
- Such acts should be equated with exerting energy in the worship of God
- Islam encourages charity and other measures that benefit others: “The best among the people are those who are a source of benefit to the people” (Hadith)
- True believers should shape their conduct in such a way as can help the fellows in day to day affairs.
- They should try to end disputes between fellows because the Quran says: “Believers are a single brotherhood; therefore make peace between your two contending brothers” (49:10)
- They should hurry to offer their prayer, share the burdon of fellows and, wherever possible, remove anything harmful from thoroughfares.
- This they should do along with other acts of charity because Islam has broadened the scope of charity.
Whosoever of you sees an evil action, let him change it with his hand, and if he is not able to do so then with his tongue, and if he is not able to do so then with his heart, and that is the weakest of faith.
- Islam teaches its followers to first establish a true Islamic society based on the teachings of the Quran and Sunnah
- It further commands them to defend the society against all possible evils with whatever available resources.
- This involves use of physical force or verbal rejection or at least condemning it from heart, though it is the lowest degree of faith of a believer
- Believers should remember that struggle against evil is a constant phenomenon as the ultimate source of evils is Satan:
- “Verily Satan is an avowed enemy to man” (12:5)
- Eradication of evil involves struggle of varying degrees depending on the available resources with the Muslim community and government.
- If sufficient resources are available, then the Muslim state may permit physical Jehad:
- “Believers……….. strive hard in God’s way with their possessions and their own selves” (49:15)
- Otherwise, evil may be suppressed through speech or writings, and in case an individual believer is unable to utilize either resource, he is required to shun evil internally.
- The best way of doing this might be to seek God’s refuge: “Say I seek refuge with the Lord of day-break. From the evil of the things created” (al-Falaq)
It was said: O Messenger of Allah, who is the most excellent of men? The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) said: ‘The believer who strives hard in the way of Allah with his person and his property.’
- Jehad or struggle in the way of God is an act of worship and shows genuineness of faith.
- Jehad is aimed at suppressing evil, stopping aggression and transgression but within the limits prescribed by the code of conduct of war in Islam.
- Muslims believe that all their physical and financial resources are granted by God, and so, they develop the spirit of placing them at God’s disposal.
- Therefore, according to their belief, those who sacrifice their lives during Jehad, are not dead:
- “Nay, they live, finding their sustenance in the presence of their Lord.” (3:169)
- Jehad is the ultimate expression of one’s faith as it involves sacrificing everything in God’s way and defending Islam.
- Those engaged in Jehad are trained to sacrifice their belongings and lives without hesitation: “Fighting is prescribed to you though you may dislike it” (2:216)
- For this reason, the Quran and the Prophet have repeatedly admired those busy in Jehad and ranked them as the best Muslims.
- The Holy Prophet fought battles, received wounds and also witnessed martyrdom of his close associates.
- He declared his uncle Hamza as “the chief of all the martyrs” as he had first migrated twice for Islam and later, laid down his life in the battle of Uhud.
The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) said: ‘Whom do you count to be a martyr among you?’ They said: O Messenger of Allah, whoever is killed in the way of Allah is a martyr. He said: 'In that case the martyrs of my community will be very few! He who is killed in the way of Allah is a martyr, he who dies a natural death in the way of Allah is a martyr, he who dies in the plague in the way of Allah is a martyr, he who dies of cholera in the way of Allah is a martyr.’
- The Hadith has expanded the scope of martyrdom by including those not involved directly in any physical fight/struggle (Jehad) in God’s way.
- Muslims are taught to believe that there are a number of non-war martyrs and they include those who endure any sudden or prolonged pain that eventually kills them.
- For example, natural death, death from plague and cholera.
- The Prophet has repeatedly said “in the way of God” and that means to die in a state of strong faith in God.
- Believers should be ready to lay down their lives in God’s way only.
- They should develop the spirit of withstanding all serious and fatal sufferings with a strong belief that everything is by the supreme will of God Almighty who alone has power to give life and death.
- They should be ready to sacrifice their lives while fighting on God’s command as well as while suffering any physical ailment with this Quranic instruction:
- “…….but give glad tidings to those who patiently preserve. Who say, when afflicted with calamity: To God we belong, and to Him is our return” (2:155-156)
- This way, serious ailments and sudden trials will not shake their faith.
No one eats better food than that which he eats out of the work of his hand
- Islam related struggle for lawful earning with the performance of obligatory rituals:
- “To earn a clean living is also a duty next to the obligatory duties of faith” (Hadith)
- Islam instructs the believers to work hard and earn by legitimate and fair means without dependence on others: “One who works for himself is a friend of God”.
- This means the Muslims should believe that hardwork of any kind is a means of earning not only material bounties but also God’s pleasure and favour.
- The Muslims should follow the example of the Prophet who set several guiding examples.
- He would mend his shoes and clothes, work as ordinary worker in the construction of the mosque and digging of the ditch.
- They should reject all such unlawful and undesirable means of earning as bribery, usury (riba) and beggary because the Prophet strictly warned his followers of the consequences of these antisocial practices:
- “The one who offers and the one who accepts the bribe will both go to the Fire of Hell”.
- They should obey the Quranic command:
- “Eat of what is on earth, lawful and good, and do not follow footsteps of Satan” (2:168)
One who manages the affairs of the widow and the poor man is like the one who exerts himself in the way of Allah, or the one who stands for prayer in the night or fasts in the day.
- Islamic teachings train the believers to develop a sense of fulfilling the rights of God as well as those of the fellow beings.
- Islam strictly instructs us to take care of the less privileged in the society. Such people have been equated by the Prophet to a regular worshipper and the one who strives in the way of God.
- The Quran links true faith with a supportive attitude towards the poor and declares those who fail to do so as the rejectors of faith:
- “Have you seen the one who denies the judgement?....... and who does not encourage the feeding of the indigent”. ( 107, al-Ma’un)
- The Muslims should follow the example of the Prophet who married the widow and often gave away his share of meal to those in need:
- “ Nor repulse the petitioner unheard” (al-Duha, 93)
- They should support those in need by regular charity and almsgiving in a way that the honour of the needy is not hurt: “There is a man who gives charity and conceals it so much that his left hand does not know what his right hand spends” (Hadith)
- This means there should be no showing off.
- The best way of supporting a widow is her remarriage with her consent as it is the Sunnah of the Prophet.
- The weak in the society should be supported and taken care of, just like the Prophet himself did in Makka and Madina.
‘I and the man who brings up an orphan will be in paradise like this.’ And he pointed with his two fingers, the index finger and the middle finger.
- Islam instructs its followers to be caring and considerate towards the unsupported and the needy.
- It promises greater rewards for such noble attitude, e.g., earning the pleasure of God and closeness to His Messenger.
- It also associates such nobility with the love for God:
- “And they feed for the love of God, the indigent, the orphan and the captive” (76:8)
- Care and support of the orphan is greatly admired by the Quran and Sunnah, as both promise huge rewards for those who are kind towards the orphan.
- This Hadith guarantees such people closeness to the Prophet in Paradise → for any believer this is no less than a fabulous award in the Hereafter.
- The Prophet, himself being an orphan, always took special care of the orphan and the needy.
- He was reminded in Surah al-Duha: “Did He not find you an orphan and give you shelter? ”
- He therefore, showered special love on the orphan
- Muslims should imitate his examples in whatever possible ways
- They should donate generously for the orphanages run and maintained by various charity organizations.
- They should adopt orphan children in the light of the admiration expressed by the Prophet, “ the best Muslim house is that in which an orphan is well treated”.
- Such noble tasks strengthen the communal bonds among the members of the Muslim community.
The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) sent Abu Musa and Mu‘adh ibn Jabal to Yaman, and he sent each of them to govern a part. Then he said: ‘Be gentle and do not be hard, and cause rejoicing and do not alienate.’
- This Hadith highlights the importance of the responsibilities of a Muslim ruler
- Being the leader of the Muslim community is a huge responsibility and a great trust of God with the ruler.
- A Muslim ruler is required to consider himself the custodian of his people, responsible for their prosperity and welfare:
- “Leader of the community is indeed its servant” (Hadith)
- “Your best rulers are those whom you love and they love you” (Hadith)
- Such an attitude is based on a strong sense of accountability before the people as well as the Supreme Lord.
- True Muslim rulers try their best to win the hearts of their people by kindness and by being very close to them, avoiding any degree of harshness.
- The Prophet and his four successors set glorious traditions about how to act as rulers
- They devoted their energies for the general welfare and collective prosperity of their people
- Muslim rulers need to follow these model rulers who ruled not only the state but also the hearts of their subjects.
- They should remove all barriers that separate them form their people and should treat them in a kind and fatherly way so that people do not fear but respect them with sincerity.
- Caliph Ali remarked: “The state might survive with paganism but might not survive with injustice”.
- They should ensure justice and follow this instruction of the Prophet: “Make things easy and don’t make them hard, and cheer up people and don’t repel them”.
He who studies the Qur’an is like the owner of tethered camels. If he attends to them he will keep hold of them, but if he lets them loose they will go away
- The conduct of the Muslims depends on the degree of their association with the Quran because it is the basis of their lives.
- The Prophet has linked this bond with the ownership of the tethered camels
- As long as the camels are supervised and kept tethered, they remain under control.
- Similarly, as long as a Muslim remains attached to the Quran by recitation, learning and comprehending it, the Quran continues to benefit him; but if this relation is weakened, the effect of the Quran gradually fades away.
- The Prophet admired those devoted to learning and teaching of the Quran: “The best among you is the one who has learned the Quran and teaches it”
- The Muslims should encourage regular recitation and learning the Quran by heart so that their ties with the Quran are strengthened”
- “Keep refreshing your knowledge of the Quran for I swear by Him in whose hand is my soul, that is the more liable to escape than camels which are tethered”
- The Quran should be recited in the manner prescribed by the Quran itself: “And recite the Quran in slow, measured rhythmic tones” (73:4)
- Also, its message should be comprehended in order to shape our conduct according to the Quranic command.
May God show mercy to a man who is kindly when he sells, when he buys, and when he demands his money back.
- Economic teachings of Islam stress on honesty and justice on one hand, while mercy and lenience on the other.
- Buyers and sellers should not have any intention of exploiting or cheating each other:
- “One who cheats is not among us” (Hadith)
- Sellers should believe that honesty and generosity are liked by God.
- Buyers similarly should not have any ill intention of exploiting any weakness of the seller.
- Creditors should believe that God alone enabled him to be a source of helping those in need and so, he should develop spirit of magnanimity when some needy person approaches him.
- The Prophet conducted trade with full honesty and dedication
- He would not hide defects of merchandise while selling any items.
- Muslim traders should follow this and should not try to unduely maximize profits.
- While buying anything, Muslims should observe some limit of bargaining so that the seller does not feel uncomfortable.
- A creditor should be generous enough to give any relief to the debtor because the Prophet greatly admired such degree of kindness:
- “Whoever has a claim on a brother which is payable and he allows respite to the debtor in his payment, he will be given the reward of charity”.
- Islam forbids any usury and instructs to extend “the beautiful loan” (Interest-free loan).
God will not show mercy to him who does not show mercy to others
- Among all attributes of God, mercy is very special because according to a Hadith-i-Qudsi:“Truly My mercy overcomes My wrath”
- God, therefore, loves those who show mercy to others, and He commands the Muslims to seek His mercy and extend mercy on others.
- The Holy Prophet is called “mercy for all creatures” in the Quran (21:107)
- The Prophet encouraged his followers to keep alive the spirit of mercy and compassion so that they get entitled to God’s mercy in the Hereafter.
- None can be more ill-fated than the one who gets deprived of God’s mercy.
- The Muslims are required to follow the footsteps of the Prophet who never cursed his enemies and insultors in Makka, Taif and the battlefield.
- In the battle of Uhud, when some companion asked him to curse the Makkans, his reply was:
- “I have not been sent to curse”
- He kindly treated captives of Badr and forgave his fatal enemies on the conquest of Makka.
- Muslims today may imitate such noble conduct and generosity of heart.
- They should not overburdon their employees and should have the moral courage of forgiving the insultors because they will receive huge reward from their Lord:
- “Be compassionate to those on earth and He, who is in the heavens, will be compassionate to you”.
The believers are like a single man; if his eye is affected he is affected, and if his head is affected he is all affected.
- Islam established the universal Muslim brotherhood when the Prophet migrated to Madina:
- “The believers are a single brotherhood” (49:10)
- All Muslims regardless of social and geographical background were united as a single community.
- Since it is a divine arrangement, all Muslims are bound to observe it
- They should develop a strong sense of belonging to the same community or family so that if any of the fellows experiences discomfort, he too should feel it.
- The Prophet also used another comparison :
- “One believer to another is like the bricks of a building; each one is holding and supporting the other”.
- The believers may follow this Hadith in a variety of ways.
- The Ansar of Madina accommodated the Muhajireen of Makka by sharing all their assets with them.
- During congregational prayers and the pilgrimage to Makka, Muslims come closer to each other and this trains them to share joys and sorrows.
- They should care for fellow Muslims in hour of need and trials
- The Prophet linked true belief with a sense of brotherhood: “you cannot be true believers unless there is reciprocal love among you”.
- They can also promote unity by collectively following the Quranic guidance :
- “And hold fast all together the Rope of God and do not be divided” (3:103)
Modesty produces nothing but good.
- Moral teachings of Islam are intimately linked with modesty
- Modesty is the barrier, like piety, against all indecencies and evils and is thus a source of strengthening faith and submission before divine commands.
- The Prophet said: “Modesty and faith are companions; when one is taken away, the other follows it”
- So, modesty strengthens and accompanies faith, and faith, in turn, promotes mental piety.
- Mental piety reflects a believer’s obedience to God and is a means of earning God’s favor.
- Modesty is antidote to evil acts and disobedience to God.
- Islam teaches ways of observing modesty both towards God and the fellow members of the community.
- Regular prayer effectively wards off evil thoughts and actions :
- “for prayer restrains from shameful and unjust deeds” (29:45)
- This way, a believer’s conduct is shaped according to the divine commands and guidance.
- Another way of observing modesty is to put interests of fellows before one’s own interests:
- “None of you truly believes unless he desires for his brother that what he desires for himself.” (Hadith)
- Such an attitude surely eliminates evils and social problems so that a balanced society develops.
He who has in his heart as much faith as a grain of mustard seed will not enter hell, and he who has in his heart as much pride as a grain of mustard seed will not enter paradise.
- According to Muslim belief, true faith alone guarantees a believer’s salvation from the fire of Hell and entry to Paradise.
- Faith promotes the spirit of submission before the will of God and thus negates pride.
- Pride symbolises disobedience as is evident from Satan’s refusal to obey God:
- “We said to angels: “Bow down to Adam”, and they all bowed down except for Iblis; he refused and was haughty” (2:34)
- A believer with the slightest degree of faith will eventually be freed from Hell and a person with the slightest amount of pride will be denied Paradise and driven to Hell: “Is there not in Hell an abode for the Haughty” (39:60)
- Muslims should promote humbleness and submission before God so that they earn His blessing.
- The Quran mentions the ways of being humble towards God and reward of such attitude:
- “The believers must eventually win through. Those who humble themselves in their prayers” (23:1, 2)
- By strengthening a sense of humility, pride can be effectively resisted and controlled.
- This ensures pleasure of God:
- “for God does not love the arrogant” (4:36)
- Following the divine guidance is the best means of promoting humility and resisting pride.
The world is the believer’s prison and the unbeliever’s paradise
- God is the Creator of this world and the Hereafter.
- He created charms in this world to test His obedient servants.
- A believer is trained by Islamic teachings to consider this world a prison where he is not free to live a life of his choice and so, can’t get attached to it just as a prisoner can’t develop a lasting association with the prison.
- A true believer gradually develops an approach to the worldly life that the Quran mentions as:
- “What is the life of this world but play and amusement? But best is the home in the Hereafter.” (6:32)
- He strongly believes in the eternal joys of the Hereafter whereas a non-believer is fully enticed by the temporary glow of this world and thus, denies the Hereafter.
- A staunch belief in the temporariness of this world and eternity of the life after death is demonstrated by a believer’s submission to God’s will:
- “Say ‘I believe in God and then act uprightly.” (Hadith)
- He lives in this world just as a prisoner or a stranger in the light of this instruction of the Prophet:
- “Live in this world as if you were a stranger or a wayfarer” Unlike the non-believers who are totally absorbed in the world, a believer considers his life as a testing phase or a cultivating ground the fruits of which will be awarded in the Hereafter:
- “This world is a seedbed for the Hereafter” (Hadith)
God does not look at your forms and your possessions, but he looks at your hearts and your deeds.
- This Hadith categorically declares the criterion by which God judges actions and conduct.
- God does not consider outward appearance or worldly gains made by a person.
- He simply considers a person’s conduct and the intentions behind it because the Prophet clearly stated in another Hadith: “Actions are judged by intentions”
- However good appearance we may carry and whatever success we get, God is so supreme and high that everything is worthless before Him because He is “Lord of all the worlds” and “He knows secrets of hearts.”
- So, a true believer strives to act according to the Quran and Sunnah and with sincerity of intention.
- Muslims should struggle to live a righteous life instead of focusing on material gains only.
- They should follow the Quran and Sunnah since this alone can guarantee success in the Hereafter. They should reject any form or degree of hypocrisy or showing off and develop sincerity of faith and intention, keeping in mind:
- “Whether you hide whatever is in your hearts or reveal it, God knows it all.” (3:29)
- They should do all noble deeds with the pure intention of earning God’s pleasure, however ordinary these deeds might seem to others.