Riyadh Saliheen
Part 14

The Gardens of the Righteous”, is a compilation of verses from the Qur’an and hadith,
By: Imam Abu Zakaria Mohiuddin Yahya An-Nawawi


Decorative Lines

Chapter | 261
Falsehood that is Permissible

باب بيان ما يجوز من الكذب

The learned compiler of this book has put forth some arguments to prove that it is lawful to tell a lie under the stress of circumstances. An example of this is the case of a Muslim who hides himself or his money from a tyrant who is bent on killing him or taking his money from him. If one knows the whereabouts of this Muslim or his money and is asked about it, it is permissible to lie in this case to save a Muslim’s life or his property, but it is better to give an equivocal answer, that is one which is not clear or definite in meaning, and that can be interpreted in more than one way in order to shun lying altogether.

The sum and substance of discussion has been derived from the narration ascribed to Umm Kulthum (May Allah be pleased with her). She said: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “A liar is not the one who tries to bring about a reconciliation between the people and speaks good to avert dispute or to convey good.” [Al-Bukhari].

It may be concluded that falsehood is permissible in the following three cases:

  1. While fighting Jihad in the Cause of Allah.
  2. To conciliate between people.
  3. For the husband to please his wife and the wife to please her husband.

Chapter | 262
Ascertainment of what
One Hears and Narrates

باب الحثَّ على التثُّبت فيما يقوله ويحكيه

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“And follow not (O man, i.e., say not or do not or witness not) that of which you have no knowledge.” (17:36)

“Not a word does he (or she) utter, but there is a watcher by him ready (to record it).” (50:18)

1547. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Prophet (PBUH) said, “It is enough for a man to prove himself a liar when he goes on narrating whatever he hears.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
We learn from this Hadith that it is not fair to accept everything one hears as true without verifying it. Nor it is right to communicate it to others because it is quite possible that what one has heard is untrue and by communicating it to others, he adds it to his own lies. It is, therefore, necessary that one should make sure that what he is communicating to others is true.

1548. Samurah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who relates from me something which he deems false is one of the liars.” [Muslim]

Commentary:
In some of the narrations of this Hadith, the word used is “Kadhibain” which means “two liars” One is that person who tells a lie and attributes his statement to the Prophet (PBUH). The second is that person who conveys it to others. Thus, this Hadith has a stern warning for those `Ulama’ and preachers who feel no hesitation in relating false and fabricated Ahadith.

1549. Asma’ (May Allah be pleased with her) reported:
A woman came to the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) and said: “I have a co-wife. “Is there any harm for me if I give her the false impression of getting something from my husband which he has not in fact given me?” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “The one who creates a false impression of receiving what one has not been given is like one who wears two garments of falsehood.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
Some people disguise themselves as pious to create a false impression of their piety; some put up the appearance of scholars to establish their scholarship; and some take to highly expensive clothes to give the impression of being rich. Since these things are fabricated and false, they constitute great sins. One should live as one really is. Similarly, the second wife should not invent false stories to give wrong impression of herself to the other wife. Nor should make false claims of greater love and attention of the husband only to incite the jealousy of the other one while the real position is far from that. In fact, even if this is so, she should not expose the weakness of the husband so that the feelings of his other wife are not injured.

Chapter | 263
Prohibition of Giving
False Testimony

باب بيان غلظ تحريم شهادة الزور

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“And shun lying speech (false statements).” (22:30)
“And follow not (O man, i.e., say not or do not or witness not) that of which you have no knowledge.” (17:36)
“Not a word does he (or she) utter, but there is a watcher by him ready (to record it).” (50:18)
“Verily, your Rubb is Ever Watchful (over them).” (89:14)
“And those who do not witness falsehood…” (25:72)

1550. Abu Bakrah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Shall I not inform you of one of the gravest of the cardinal sins?” We said: “Yes, O Messenger of Allah!” He (PBUH) said, “To join others as partners with Allah in worship and to be undutiful to one’s parents.” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) sat up from his reclining position (in order to stress the importance of what he was going to say) and added, “I warn you making a false statement and giving a false testimony. I warn you against making a false statement and giving a false testimony.” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) kept on repeating this (warning) till we wished he should stop. [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

Commentary:
The contents of this Hadith make the gravity of making a false statement abundantly clear. How unfortunate indeed it is that, like other major sins, the evil of giving false testimony is very common among the present-day Muslims. May Allah prevent us from it.

Chapter | 264
Prohibition of Cursing one
Particular Man or Animal
باب تحريم لعن إنسان بعينه أو دابة

1551.
Abu Zaid Thabit bin Ad-Dahhak Al-Ansari (May Allah be pleased with him( (he is one of those who gave their pledge of allegiance to the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) under the Tree) said: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who swears by a religion other than that of Islam, is like what he has professed. He who kills himself with something, will be tormented with it on the Day of Resurrection. A person is not bound to fulfill a vow about something which he does not possess. Cursing a believer is like murdering him.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
“He who swears by a religion other than that of Islam” here means either of the two things stated here. For instance, if a person says: “If I do such and such, then I am a Christian or a Jew.” Now if he really intends to embrace Christianity or Judaism, he will immediately become so because his intention to be a Kafir (disbeliever) is Kufr (infidelity) in itself. But if the vow is meant to deny the adoption of other religions and is intended to express his firm resolution to live as a Muslim to the last even then such a vow is undesirable and is a sin for which one must seek Allah’s forgiveness. The last sentence of this Hadith evidently shows that to curse a Muslim is forbidden because it is akin to killing him.

1552. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: “It does not befit a Siddiq (righteous Muslim) to frequently curse others.” [Muslim]

Commentary:
Taunts, curses and abusive language are contrary to perfect Faith and fidelity.

1553. Abud-Darda’ (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Those who frequently resort to cursing (people) would neither be accepted as witnesses nor as intercessors on the Day of Resurrection.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
The habit of taunting and cursing makes a man sinful. Such a person has no value with Allah, and his testimony and intercession will not be considered on the Day of Judgement.

1554. Samurah bin Jundub (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Do not curse one another, invoking Curse of Allah or Wrath of Allah or the fire of Hell.” [Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi].

Commentary:
We learn from this Hadith that Muslims should neither curse nor imprecate each other. For instance they are forbidden to say “May the Curse of Allah be upon you” or “I wish you to burn in Hell-fire” etc., etc.

1555. Ibn Mas`ud (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “A true believe is not involved in taunting, or frequently cursing (others) or in indecency or abusing.” [At-Tirmidhi].

Commentary:
This Hadith tells us the virtues of a Mu’min (true Muslim). Taunting here means to disgrace someone with reference to his lineage or by means of backbiting and slander. La`in is a person who is given to frequently cursing others, reproaching and using abusive language. (Fahish) is one who commits through word or practice immodesty. Badhiy is a person with a loose tongue. This word is also used for an impudent and abusive person. This Hadith strongly criticizes these vices.

1556. Abud-Darda’ (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “When a person curses somebody or something, the curse goes up to heaven and the gates of heaven get closed. Then it comes down to the earth and its gates get closed. Then it turns right and left, and if it does not find an entrance to go anywhere, it returns to the person or thing that was cursed; if he or it deserves to be cursed; otherwise it returns to the person who uttered it.” [Abu Dawud].

Commentary:
Al-La`nah (curse) means deprivation of Allah’s Mercy. We learn from this Hadith that the act of cursing is such that one who does it can become himself a victim of it. One should, therefore, abstain from cursing.

1557. `Imran bin Husain (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
We were with the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) on a journey and there was a woman from the Ansar riding a she-camel. She abused and invoked curse upon it. The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) heard it and said, “Off load the she-camel and set it free because it has been cursed.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
This Hadith teaches us not to curse animals. It also teaches us to treat them nicely and be patient with them..

1558. Abu Barzah Nadlah bin `Ubaid Al-Aslami (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
A young woman was riding a she-camel on which there was the luggage of people. Suddenly she saw the Prophet (PBUH). The pass of the mountain became narrow for her people (because of fear). The young woman said to the she-camel: “Go ahead.” When it did not move, she said, “O Allah! Curse it.” The Prophet (PBUH) said, “The she-camel that has been cursed should not accompany us.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
Some people have taken this Hadith to mean that the she-camel cursed by the young woman was abandoned there and it was neither used for transport nor conveyance, as was the practice in the pre-Islamic period with she-camels which were let loose for free pasture for the polytheists’ false gods, and nothing was allowed to be carried on them. Such she-camels were called as “As-Sa’ibah” There is no justification for such interpretation because the she-camel was not set absolutely free like As-Sa’ibah.

All that was done was that because of the curse, it was considered unworthy of the entourage company of the Prophet (PBUH). Except for this bar, it was valid for all other purposes. Thus, this Hadith proves that it is not permissible to associate with people who are given to sins and heresies in religion because they have been cursed. When one is not permitted to keep an animal which has been cursed, how can one possibly keep company with people who commit acts as a result of which they have been cursed.

Chapter | 265
Justification of Cursing the
Wrongdoers without Specifying one of them
باب جواز لعن بعض أصحاب المعاصي غير المُعَيّنِين

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“No doubt! the Curse of Allah is on the Zalimun (polytheists, wrongdoers, oppressors).” (11:18)
“Then a crier will proclaim between them: `The Curse of Allah is on the Zalimun (polytheists and wrongdoers).”’ (7:44)

It has been authentically reported that the Messenger of Allah said, “Curse of Allah is upon those women who wear false hair, and those women who prepare such.” And he (PBUH) said, “Curse of Allah is upon the one who eats Riba (usury).” And he also cursed the painters of pictures of living objects. And he (PBUH) said, “Curse of Allah is upon him who make changes in land boundaries (to deprive others).” He (PBUH) also said, “Curse of Allah is upon the thief who steals (even) an egg.” He also said, “Curse of Allah is upon the one who curses his parents.” And: “Curse of Allah is upon the one who sacrifices an animal for other than Allah.”

And he (PBUH) said, “Who invents heresies in religion here (Al-Madinah), and upon those who supported him, is the Curse of Allah and the angels and all the people.” And he (PBUH) said, “O Allah! Curse be upon Ri`l, Dhakwan and Usaiyyah, the three tribes of Arab who are disobedient to Allah and His Messenger.” He also said, “Curse of Allah is upon the Jews who turned the graves of their Prophets into places of worship.” And he (PBUH) cursed those men who imitate women and those women who imitate men. All these Ahadith are authentic, and are reported by Al-Bukhari or Muslim or by them both. These Ahadith will be cited under their respective chapters, In sha’ Allah.

Chapter | 266
Prohibition of Reviling a
Muslim without any Cause

باب تحريم سبّ المسلم بغير حقّ

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“And those who annoy believing men and women undeservedly, bear on themselves the crime of slander and plain sin.” (33:58)

1559. Ibn Mas`ud (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Reviling a Muslim is Fusuq (disobedience of Allah) and killing him is (tantamount to) disbelief.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
“Killing him is (tantamount) to disbelief” means that in terms of sin and prohibition, it is akin to Kufr. This Hadith makes the severity of this crime abundantly clear.

1560. Abu Dharr (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:
I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying, “When any Muslim accuses another Muslim of sin or of disbelief, the reproach rebounds upon the one who utters it, if the other person is not deserving of it.” [Al-Bukhari].

Commentary:
What this Hadith stresses is that one should never say about a Muslim that he is sinful (Fasiq) or disbeliever (Kafir) when he is not so. The reason is that in that case, one who says it, will be held Fasiq or Kafir.

One should, therefore, strictly refrain from uttering such statements.

1561. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “When two persons indulge in abusing each other, the beginner will be the sinner so long as the oppressed does not transgress the limits.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
This Hadith tells us that if a Muslim abuses another and says unfair things about him and in return the recipient also abuses him and says unfair things to the same extent, then the entire burden of sin of abusing would lie with the person who initiated the quarrel. But if the one who is wronged, exceeds the limits in revenge, then he will also be guilty to the degree of his excess. Thus, this Hadith shows that although revenge is permissible in Islam, it is better to forgive and bear the excess with patience. The reason behind this is that in revenge, one usually exceeds the limits and becomes an aggressor. Allah says:

“And verily, whosoever shows patience and forgives, that would truly be from the things recommended by Allah.” (42:43).

1562. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
A drunkard was brought to the Prophet (PBUH). He said, “Give him a beating.” Then some beat him with their hands, some with their shoes, and some with (a folded) piece of cloth. When he left, someone said to him: “May Allah disgrace you!” The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Do not help Satan overcome him by uttering such words.” [Al-Bukhari].

Commentary:
We learn from this Hadith that imprecation against a sinner helps Satan because he is avowed to disgrace and humiliate Muslims before Allah. When a Muslim curses another Muslim and imprecates for his humiliation and disgrace, he in fact tries to accomplish the mission of Satan because in doing so Satan will have achieved his objective. Therefore, one should not curse a fellow Muslim even if he or she is a sinner. In fact, one should pray to Allah for his or her guidance.

1563. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying, “He who accuses his slave of Zina will receive the punishment (Hadd) of slander on the Day of Resurrection, unless the accusation of Zina was true.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
On the Day of Judgement, the masters of slaves and slave-girls will be exposed to Hadd-ul-Qadfi (Hadd for accusing someone of adultery) for the reason that they perpetrate all kinds of oppressions on their captives and their grievances are not redressed. On the Day of Judgement, when Almighty Allah dispenses justice without any prejudice and favour, He will also do full justice to this oppressed class and those masters, who somehow escaped the punishment on this account in this world. Thus, this Hadith has a stern warning for those masters who are carried away by their might and authority and perpetrate oppression on their servants and slaves.

Chapter | 267 
Prohibition of Abusing the Deceased
without a valid Legal reason
Approved by Shari’ah

باب تحريم سبّ الأموات بغير حقِّ ومصلحة شرعية

1564. `Aishah (May Allah be pleased with her) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Do not abuse the dead, because they have attained that which they had forwarded (i.e., their deeds, good or bad).” [Al-Bukhari].

Commentary:
We learn from this Hadith that we should not censure or condemn the deceased because they have reached their end and they are receiving in the Hereafter return for whatever deeds they did in their life. There is no harm, however, in abusing the disbelievers who died in a state of Kufr.

Chapter | 268
Prohibition of Maligning
باب النهي عن الإيذاء

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“And those who annoy believing men and women undeservedly, bear on themselves the crime of slander and plain sin.” (33:58)

1565. `Abdullah bin `Amr bin Al-`As (May Allah be pleased with them) reported:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “A (true) Muslim is one from whose tongue and hand the Muslims are safe; and a Muhajir (Emigrant) is he who leaves the deeds which Allah has prohibited.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
Everyone who professes Tauhid and acknowledges the Prophethood of Muhammad (PBUH), is a Muslim, but a perfect Muslim is one who has attained that high level where he does not harm any Muslim with his hand and tongue (speech). Similarly, an Emigrant is the one who abandons his homeland and relatives and goes to a place where he can easily practise the religion of Allah. But such a person is also an Emigrant who renounces all such things which are forbidden by Allah, because emigration means abandoning, whether it is abandoning of homeland or sins.

1566. `Abdullah bin `Amr bin Al-`As (May Allah be pleased with them) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who desires to be rescued from the fire of Hell and to enter Jannah, should die in a state of complete belief in Allah and the Last Day, and should do unto others what he wishes to be done unto him.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
This Hadith is part of a long Hadith which has already been mentioned. See Hadith No. 668. It stresses steadfastness in Faith and virtuous deeds because the time of death is not known to anyone. Since one can die at any moment, one should never be unmindful of the obligations of Faith and good deeds so that he embraces death in a state of perfect Faith. This Hadith has the same meanings which are contained in the Verse 102 of the Surat Al-`Imran exhorting the Muslims thus: “And die not except in a state of Islam [(as Muslim) with complete submission to Allah].” Every Muslim should treat people as nicely as he himself desires to be treated by others.

Chapter | 269
Prohibition of Nursing
Rancor and Enmity

باب النهي عن التباغض والتقاطع والتدابر

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“The believers are nothing else than brothers (in Islamic religion).” (49:10)
“… humble towards the believers, stern towards the disbelievers …”  (5:54)
“Muhammad (PBUH) is the Messenger of Allah, and those who are with him are severe against disbelievers, and merciful among themselves.” (48:29)

1567. Anas bin Malik (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Do not harbour grudge against one another, nor jealousy, nor enmity; and do not show your backs to one another; and become as fellow brothers and slaves of Allah. It is not lawful for a Muslim to avoid speaking with his brother beyond three days.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
“Do not harbour grudge against one another” means that one should not say or do any thing which is likely to create ill-will and hatred in others. “Nor jealousy” signifies that if a Muslim is granted any blessing by Allah, one should not wish that he be deprived of it. “Do not show your backs to one another” means that if you come across one another, exchange salutations rather than avoid each other. Since all such things create conflict and dissension, these are strictly forbidden in Islam. Muslims are required to resume their conversation and contacts after a maximum period of three days. Any breach beyond this period is prohibited.

1568. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “The gates of Jannah are opened on Mondays and Thursdays, and then every slave (of Allah) is granted forgiveness if he does not associate anything with Allah in worship. But the person in whose heart there is rancour against his (Muslim) brother, they will not be pardoned and with regard to them it will be said twice: `Hold both of them until they are reconciled with each other.”’ [Muslim].

Commentary:
We learn from this Hadith that mutual enmity, grudge and malice are bound to deprive a man from Jannah in the Hereafter.

Chapter | 270
Prohibition of Envy
باب تحريم الحسد

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“Or do they envy men (Muhammad (PBUH) and his followers) for what Allah has given them of His Bounty?” (4:54)

1569. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Beware of envy because envy consumes (destroys) the virtues just as the fire consumes the firewood,” or he said “grass.” [Abu Dawud].

Commentary:
Envy is one of the major sins which are bound to destroy virtues as fast as the fire burns the wood and dry grass to ashes.

Chapter | 271
Prohibition of Spying on Muslims
and to be Inquisitive about Others

باب النهي عن التجسّس والتسمّع لكَلام مَن يكره استماعُهُ

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“And spy not.” (49:12)
“And those who annoy believing men and women undeservedly, bear on themselves the crime of slander and plain sin.” (33:58)

1570. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Beware of suspicion, for suspicion is the worst of false tales. Do not look for other’s faults. Do not spy one another, and do not practise Najsh (means to offer a high price for something in order to allure another customer who is interested in the thing). Do not be jealous of one another and do not nurse enmity against one another. Do not sever ties with one another. Become the slaves of Allah, and be brothers to one another as He commanded. A Muslim is the brother of a Muslim. He should neither oppress him nor humiliate him. The piety is here! The piety is here!” While saying so he pointed towards his chest. “It is enough evil for a Muslim to look down upon his Muslim brother.

All things of a Muslim are inviolable for his brother in Faith: his blood, his wealth and his honour. Verily, Allah does not look to your bodies nor to your faces but He looks to your hearts and your deeds.” Another narration is: “Do not feel envy against one another; do not nurse enmity; do not spy on one another and do not cheat one another. Be Allah’s slaves, brethren to one another.” Another narration is: “Do not have estranged relations with one another. Do not nurse enmity and do not feel envy against one another. O Allah’s worshippers! Be brothers!” Another narration is: “Do not estrange mutual relations and do not intervene into the transaction which is likely to be settled with another person.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
“Beware of suspicion” means such suspicion about a Muslim for which no apparent evidence is available. Similar is the case of that thought which emerges in one’s mind without any logic. “Najsh” means to give higher bid in auction only to deceive others. Thus, it is a false bid which is not at all intended for purchasing the thing which is being auctioned. The instructions given to the Muslims in this Hadith are meant to secure the honour of Muslims. Since, doubt without any reason, and search for defects and weaknesses go against the security of a Muslim’s honour, Islam has strictly forbidden Muslims from them.

Another purpose for forbidding such things is to consolidate Muslim brotherhood. For this reason, they have been forbidden from oppression, leaving their Muslim brothers in lurch, considering others humble, and from taking pride in worldly possessions. In fact, the life, property, and honour of a Muslim have been declared unlawful for all other Muslims. Increase in a bid without any intention of buying the thing being auctioned and bargain over a bargain have also been prohibited because they also create ill-will and enmity.

1571. Muawiyah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying, “If you find faults with Muslims, you will corrupt them.” [Abu Dawud].

Commentary:
If a Muslim looks for the defects of another and hunts for his weaknesses, other Muslims will also adopt the same attitude towards him, and this situation will create dissension and conflict in society. This also will make them fall prey to sins and make them persistent in committing them. For this reason, spying and finding faults with Muslims has been prohibited by Shari`ah.

1572. It has been reported:
That a man was brought before Abdullah bin Mas`ud (May Allah be pleased with him) because his beard was giving out smell of wine. Ibn Mas`ud said: “We have been prohibited from spying (on Muslims) and finding faults (with them). But we can take to task only and only if the sin is overt. [Abu Dawud].

Commentary:

  • In this Hadith we find a model conduct of the Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) which was taught to them by Islam. The Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) were certainly strict followers of the commands and prohibitions of Islam.
  • A Hadd or Ta`zir (punishment) is not enforced on mere suspicion. A solid evidence is essential for both of them.

Chapter | 272
Prohibition f Suspicion
باب النهي عن سوء الظنّ بالمسلمين من غير ضرورة

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“O you who believe! Avoid much suspicions, indeed some suspicions are sins.” (49:12)

1573. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Beware of suspicion, for suspicion is the worst of false tales.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
This Hadith has already been mentioned (No. 15). It warns us against suspicions about other Muslims as this involves telling lies about them, which is strictly forbidden. This is the reason why it is referred to as the worst of false tales. We also learn from this Hadith that the orders and punishments of Shari`ah are enforced on certainty, not on speculations and conjectures.

Chapter | 273 
Prohibition of Despising Muslims
باب تحريم احتقار المسلمين

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“O you who believe! Let not a group scoff at another group; it may be that the latter are better than the former. Nor let (some) women scoff at other women; it may be that the latter are better than the former. Nor defame one another, nor insult one another by nicknames. How bad is it to insult one’s brother after having Faith [i.e., to call your Muslim brother (a faithful believer) as: `O sinner’, or `O wicked’]. And whosoever does not repent, then such are indeed Zalimun (wrongdoers).” (49:11)

“Woe to every slanderer and backbiter.” (105:1)

1574. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “It is enough evil for a Muslim to look down upon his (Muslim) brother.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
This Hadith has already been mentioned (Hadith No. 1571). Its meanings are evident and need no elaboration.

1575. Ibn Mas`ud (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Prophet (PBUH) said, “The haughty, even with pride equal to a mustard seed in his heart, will not enter Jannah.” A man enquired: “What about that a person likes fine dress and fine shoes?” He said: “Allah is Beautiful and likes beauty. Pride amounts to disclaiming truth out of selfesteem, and despising people .” [Muslim].

Commentary:
This Hadith has already been mentioned (Hadith No. 216). Imam An-Nawawi has interpreted the words “Batar-ul-Haq” as “Daf`-ul-Haq” that is to evade the truth and return it to the person who says it, which practically means evasion. To dress well does not come in the category of pride, as people generally consider it. In fact, pride constitutes what is mentioned in this Hadith.

1576. Jundub bin `Abdullah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Once someone said: `By Allah! Allah will not forgive such and such (a person).’ Thereupon Allah, the Exalted and the Glorious, said: `Who is he who takes an oath in My Name that I will not grant pardon to so-and-so? I have granted pardon to so-and-so and rendered your good deeds fruitless.”’ [Muslim].

Commentary:
Some people become self-conceited as a result of their excessive worship to the point that they start disparaging and making low estimates of their fellow Muslims and their deeds, little knowing that Allah, Glorious is He, is of vast forgiveness. They do not realize that if Allah so wills, He can destroy all their deeds and consign them to Hell and send the other people who have been disparaged and underestimated to Jannah. Therefore, one should never become proud of his piety nor should one consider others of little value or good deeds, as only Allah Alone knows what is inside our hearts.

Chapter | 274
Prohibition of Rejoicing
Over another’s Trouble

باب النهي عن إظهار الشماتة بالمسلم

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“The believers are nothing else than brothers (in Islamic religion).” (49:10)
“Verily, those who like that (the crime of) illegal sexual intercourse should be propagated among those who believe, they will have a painful torment in this world and in the Hereafter.” (24:19)

1577. Wathilah bin Al-Asqa` (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Do not express pleasure at the misfortune of a (Muslim) brother lest Allah should bestow mercy upon him and make you suffer from a misfortune.” [At-Tirmidhi].

Commentary:
A true believer is one who feels unhappy to see Muslims suffering, and rejoices on the happiness of his other fellows in Faith. It is contrary to the conduct of a true believer to rejoice over the trouble of another Muslim as this attitude is very much disliked by Allah. There is every possibility that Allah may punish such aperson in this world and relieve the one who is in trouble. See also Hadith No. 1571.

Chapter | 275
Prohibition of Deriding one’s Lineage
باب تحريم الطعن في الأنساب الثابتة في ظاهر الشرع

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“And those who annoy believing men and women undeservedly, bear on themselves the crime of slander and plain sin.” (33:58)

1578. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Two matters are signs of disbelief on the part of those who indulge in them: Defaming and speaking evil of a person’s lineage, and wailing over the dead.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
Both the sins mentioned in this Hadith are such that if a Muslim thinks them lawful and still commits them he will become a Kafir. To defame someone’s lineage means to disgrace or humiliate somebody by saying to him or to her: “Your father belongs to such and such profession” or “Your mother is such and such / so-and-so” or “You are a weaver, blacksmith, laundrer, cobbler, etc.” Mourning and wailing means expressing qualities of a deceased person through weeping, crying and lamenting loudly. Imam An-Nawawi said that such qualities are attributes and acts of the disbelievers and practices of the pre-Islamic period, or Jahiliyyah.

Chapter | 276
Prohibition of Deceiving others
باب النهي عن الغش والخِداع

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“And those who annoy believing men and women undeservedly, bear on themselves the crime of slander and plain sin.” (33:58)

1579. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who takes up arms against us is none of us; and he who cheats us is none of us.” [Muslim].

Another narration of Muslim is: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) happened to pass by a heap of corn. He thrust his hand in that (heap) and his fingers felt wetness. He said to the owner of that heap of corn, “What is this?” He replied:

“O Messenger of Allah! These have been drenched by rainfall.” He remarked, “Why did you not place this (the drenched part of the heap) over the corn so that people might see it? He who deceives is not of us.”

Commentary:

  1. To take arms here signifies to revolt against the Muslim community (and a Muslim government, for that matter) or draw a sword, gun, etc., to kill a Muslim – a common practice in the present-day terrorism.
  2. Forgery and deceit have two different forms; one is implied and other is physical and visible. In the former, falsehood is given a veneer of truth. The latter is concealment of some defect, adulteration of some inferior quality merchandise in a superior one, addition of something to increase weight or volume or a substance by unfair means and other malpractices.
  3. “He is none of us” means “He is not following the way of Muslims” or “His conduct is unlike that of Muslims.” It is therefore, necessary for every Muslim to abstain from such evils.

1580. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Do not practice Najsh (to cheat).” [Muslim].

Commentary:
This Hadith has already been mentioned (Hadith No. 1591). Najsh means to offer a high price for something in order to allure another customer who is interested in the thing. If a person has no intention of purchasing a thing which is being auctioned, one should not give a higher bid for it because its genuine customer will be deceived by it, and he will purchase it at a higher price. This is also a form of deceit which must be strictly avoided.

1581. Ibn `Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) prohibited the practice of Najsh. [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
This Hadith tells us that one should not make an offer of a higher price if one has no intention of buying it because that will be a fraud. For this reason this practice has been forbidden.

1582. Ibn `Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) said:
A man mentioned to the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) that he was often deceived in dealings. The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said to him, “When you enter into a transaction you should say: “There should be no deception.”’ [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
The words mentioned in the Hadith for the customer are meant to protect his right, implying that if there is something amiss in the bargain, he will have the right to return the commodity purchased by him. The seller will have to respect this right of the buyer.

1583. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who deceives another’s wife or his slave is none of us.” [Abu Dawud].

Commentary:
To incite or provoke someone’s wife or slave against her husband or his master or to create hatred between the two is a great crime, because a Muslim is required to create peace and accord amongst people. It is against his conduct to foment dissension and discord between them.

Chapter | 277
Prohibition of the Treachery
and Breaking one’s Covenant
باب تحريم الغدر

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“O you who believe! Fulfill (your) obligations.” (5:1)
“And fulfill (every) covenant. Verily! The covenant will be questioned about.” (17:34)

1584. `Abdullah bin `Amr bin Al-`As (May Allah be pleased with them) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Whosoever possesses these four characteristics is a sheer hypocrite; and anyone who possesses one of them possesses a characteristic of hypocrisy till he gives it up. These are: when he is entrusted with something, he proves dishonest; when he speaks, he tells a lie; when he makes a covenant, he proves treacherous; and when he quarrels, he behaves in very imprudent, evil, insulting manner.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
This Hadith has already been mentioned (Hadith No. 1544). The traits mentioned in this Hadith are peculiar to hypocrites and every Muslim is required to abstain from them. Excellence of character is riveted with Faith. The nobility of character is invariably reflected in Faith, and where there is no Faith there will be little excellence of character.

1585. Ibn Mas`ud, Ibn `Umar and Anas (May Allah be pleased with them) said:
The Prophet (PBUH) said, “For every one who breaks his covenant, there will be a (huge) flag on the Day of Resurrection and it will be said: `This flag proclaims a breach of covenant by so-and-so.”’ [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:
“Ghadr'” means breach of oath and its disregard. On the Day of Judgement, a person with such a quality will be given a (huge) flag which will be a sign of his lack of sincerity to his words.

1586. Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Every one who breaks a covenant will have a flag by his buttocks on the Day of Resurrection. It will be raised higher according to the nature of his breach. Behold, there will be no greater a sin with respect to breaking the covenant than that of a ruler who breaks his covenant with the Muslim masses.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
This Hadith clearly shows that breach of covenant is forbidden in Islam, especially on the part of a ruler because (a) he is in a position to honour his covenant, and (b) his evil can affect the whole Muslim community. It was a custom in the Pre-Islamic Period of Ignorance in Arabia to fix flags on poles for those who were guilty of breach of oath to humiliate and defame them. Almighty Allah has mentioned the punishment of flags on the Day of Resurrection for such people who break their covenant so that people can easily understand its nature. What a humiliation that will be!

* Placing the flag by his bottom signifies humiliation and disgrace because flags are usually carried in front of the bearer not behind. (Editor’s Note)

1587. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:
The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Allah, the Exalted, says: `I will contend on the Day of Resurrection against three (types of) people: One who makes a covenant in My Name and then breaks it; one who sells a free man as a slave and devours his price; and one who hires a workman and having taken full work from him, does not pay him his wages.”’ [Al-Bukhari].

Commentary:
This Hadith highlights the importance of fulfillment of promise, the prohibition of the sale of a free person, and the payment of due wages to the labourers.

Chapter | 278
Prohibition of Recounting of Favors
باب النهي عن المنّ بالعطية ونحوها

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“O you who believe! Do not render in vain your Sadaqah (charity) by reminders of your generosity or by injury.” (2:264)
“Those who spend their wealth in the Cause of Allah, and do not follow up their gifts with reminders of their generosity or with injury.” (2:262)

1588. Abu Dharr (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Prophet (PBUH) observed: “There are three (types of) people to whom Allah will neither speak on the Day of Resurrection nor look at them nor purify them, and they will have a painful chastisement.” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) repeated it three times. Abu Dharr (May Allah be pleased with him) remarked: “They are ruined. Who are they, O Messenger of Allah?” Upon this, the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “One who lets down his lower garments (below his ankels) out of arrogance, one who boasts of his favours done to another; and who sells his goods by taking a false oath.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
The Hadith makes it evident that it is forbidden for a man to let his lower-body garment go beyond his ankles out of arrogance. The Hadith also makes it clear that it is forbidden to take a false oath with a view to sell one’s goods. Messenger of Allah (PBUH) also said in a Hadith reported by Al-Bukhari:”Taking a false oath) helps one sell one’s goods well but takes away Allah’s blessings from it.”

Chapter | 279
Prohibition of Arrogance

and Oppression
باب النهي عن الافتخار والبغي

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“So ascribe not purity to yourselves. He knows best him who fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him [i.e., those who are Al-Muttaqun (the pious)].” (53:32)

“The way (of blame) is only against those who oppress men and wrongly rebel in the earth without justification; for such there will be a painful torment.” (42:42)

1589. `Iyad bin Himar (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Verily, Allah has revealed to me that you should adopt humility. So that no one may wrong another and no one may be disdainful and haughty towards another.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
Anyone whom Allah has granted wealth or authority, beauty or splendour, should take it as Allah’s Gift. He should take to adopt humility and humbleness and express his gratitude for it to Allah. He should benefit people with the gifts bestowed upon him by Allah and not make them a means of pride and oppression.

1590. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “When a person says: `People have been ruined, he is the one to be ruined the most.”’ [Muslim]

In another version: “He himself is the most ruined among them.”

Commentary:
This Hadith prohibits a Muslim from saying the statement in the Hadith or something similar to it out of arrogance and pride. There is no harm, however, if one says it in view of the bad state of affairs to which Muslims have been reduced as a result of, for example, neglecting the teachings of Islam. Of the religious scholars, who hold this view, are Imam Malik bin Anas, Imam Al-Khattabi, Al-Humaidi and others. This point has been made clear in Imam An-Nawawi’s Al-Adhkar.

Chapter | 280
Prohibition of Breaking
Ties and Relationships

باب تحريم الهجران بين المسلمين فوق ثلاثة أيام

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“The believers are nothing else than brothers (in Islamic religion). So make reconciliation between your brothers.” (49:10)

“But do not help one another in sin and transgression.” (5:2)

1591. Anas bin Malik (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Do not desert (stop talking to) one another, do not nurse hatred towards one another, do not be jealous of one another, and become as fellow brothers and slaves of Allah. It is not lawful for a Muslim to stop talking to his brother (Muslim) for more than three days.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

Commentary:
“Hijran” means to terminate contacts and speech. All the things mentioned in this Hadith are prohibited for the reason that they go against the spirit of Muslim brotherhood. Muslims are ordained to maintain the bond of Islamic fraternity.

1592. Abu Ayyub Al-Ansari (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “It is not lawful for a Muslim to desert (stop talking to) his brother beyond three nights, the one turning one way and the other turning to the other way when they meet, the better of the two is one who is the first to greet the other.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Commentary:

  1. Since Islam is a religion based on the nature of man, it has a suitable concession in all his natural affairs. When there occurs a dispute between two Muslims then unpleasantness and contraction of mind are bound to result from it. In such a situation they naturally do not like to speak or maintain contact with each other. Islamic Shari`ah has acknowledged the validity of this reaction and granted permission to the party to suspend speech for three days. Since longevity of suspension of contact leads to severe hatred and animosity which increases dissension in society, creates obstruction in family relations and injures the bond of friendship, Muslims have been ordered not to let this temporary unpleasantness and turbidity go beyond a period of three days.
  2. By highlighting the merit of Salam (salutation), this Hadith has prescribed an easy way for resuming the relations because Salam increases mutual love and paves the way for conversation and reconciliation.

1593. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “People’s deeds are presented before Allah on Mondays and Thursdays, and then every slave (of Allah) is granted forgiveness (of minor sins) if he does not associate anything with Allah in worship. But the person in whose heart there is rancor against his brother, will not be pardoned. With regard to them, it is said twice: `Hold these two until they are reconciled’.” [Muslim].

Commentary:
To entertain enmity without any major lawful reason is akin to inviting the displeasure of Allah. May Allah save us from it.

1594. Jabir (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) as saying, “The Satan has despaired of being worshipped by those who engage in prayer in the Arabian Peninsula but (has not lost hope) in creating dissension among them.” [Muslim].

Commentary:

  1. This Hadith is one of the proofs of Prophethood of Muhammad (PBUH). His prophecy has come true that Muslims will fight among themselves and, as a result of mutual conflicts, sever links with one another; and this situation will arise as a result of the mischief, provocation and evil suggestions made by Satan.
  2. One of the benefits of Salat is to maintain and strengthen the feeling of brotherhood and fraternity between Muslims..

1595. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “It is not lawful for a Muslim to forsake his (Muslim) brother beyond three days; and whosoever does so for more than three days, and then dies, will certainly enter the Hell.” [Abu Dawud].

Commentary:
Such a Muslim who persistently forsakes his Muslim brother for more than three days (i.e., he does not greet him and talk to him) and dies in this state, will certainly be punished in Hell along with other Muslims who violate such Divine injunctions. After suffering the punishment in Hell, he will be sent to Jannah because it is only the Kuffar (infidels) who would remain in Hell for ever. It does not, however, mean that a Muslim is at liberty to do what he wishes and he will not be sent to Hell even temporarily for punishment. Such an impression is a gross misunderstanding. This applies to women as well.

1596.
Abu Khirash Hadrad bin Abu Hadrad Al-Aslami (May Allah be pleased with him) said: I heard the Prophet (PBUH) saying, “Whosoever forsakes his brother for a year is like one who sheds his blood.” [Abu Dawud].

Commentary:
This Hadith strongly condemns those Muslims who forsake their brothers and sisters in Faith. Since those who are forsaken, have to suffer mental torture, this act has been regarded equivalent in gravity to killing.

1597. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “It is not permissible for a believer to forsake his (Muslim) brother for more than three days. If three days have passed, he should meet him and greet him; and if other responds to it they will both share the reward; but if he does not respond, he will bear his sin and the one who (has taken the initiative to) greet (the other) will be absolved of the sin of forsaking (one’s brother in Faith).” [Abu Dawud].

Commentary:

  1. Contact and speech with people should be for the Pleasure of Allah only. For instance, if somebody is a heretic in religion, or commits sins openly, and in spite of the advice given to him, he does not mend his way, a Muslim can renounce contact with him for the sake of Allah. Such renunciation is permissible. In fact, it is desirable so that he may learn a lesson from it and may change himself. But severing contacts merely for worldly grievances is not permissible.
  2. After three days, one who should take the initiative in giving Salam is more superior than the other. If the second party does not respond and perpetuates malice and enmity, he will be sinful and the former will be absolved of the sin of rupturing contact.