Read the following ahadith and answer the questions given below:
1. “None of you has faith unless I am dearer to him than his father, and his son and all mankind”. What is the meaning of this Hadith?
It means that if one wants to be a true Muslim, the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad should become one’s priority and it should be above all other human considerations. For example, if one’s father tells to do something, which the Prophet has prohibited, then the Prophet’s teaching must be preferred and followed and not what one’s father tells.
2. “Perform part of your prayers at home, so that your houses do not become like graves”.
a. Which part of one’s prayers can be performed at home?
One can perform the Sunnah and Nafil prayers at home instead of offering them in the mosque.
b. What is compared to the home where prayers are not performed? And Why?
The Prophet compared the home where prayers are not performed with that of a grave. It is because prayers are not performed in the graves.
3. “There are two blessings which most people misuse: health and leisure”.
a. What are the two blessings, which most people misuse?
The two blessings, which most people misuse, are health and leisure.
b. In what way health and leisure are blessings.
Health and leisure are deadly combinations for the wise and active people to do good, beneficial deeds by utilising time in a useful way. If a person falls sick or is afflicted with some disease and is bed ridden, he would be unable to carry out his work. Similarly, a busy person without leisure would not be able to fulfil many obligations, for example: spending time with one’s family. Health and leisure, therefore, are blessings.
c. Explain how people misuse health and leisure?
A healthy man who has time at his disposal can do many constructive things and be a source of help to others. However, if he is using these two blessings to carry out activities that are harmful to the society, then definitely he is misusing them.
4. “No one eats better food than the one who earns from the work of his own hands”.
a. Explain the above-quoted hadith?
Earning a livelihood through one’s own hard work is the better way – the dignified way – to live in this world. Those who live on other’s earnings are indeed parasites that have no self-respect!
b. Why did the Prophet say, “No one eats better food than the one who earns from the work of his own hands”?
Islam condemns lethargy and beggary. It wants Muslims to stand on their own legs. It wants Muslims to lead a dignified life. That is why the Prophet said this.
5. “There is no disease for which Allah has not sent a cure”.
a. What is the meaning of ‘There is no disease for which Allah has not sent a cure”?
It means: if there is a disease, there is a cure.
b. If that is true, why, then, there is no cure for cancer?
The Prophet cannot be wrong. There is a cure even for cancer. The problem lies in striving to find a cure. If doctors and medical scientists explore the avenues, they will definitely find a cure for cancer.
6. “Paradise lies at the feet of the mothers”.
What is meant by ‘Paradise lying at the feet of the mothers’?
It means, when you are good to your parents, obeying, respecting and being kind to them, Paradise, then, is yours!
7. “It is charity for any Muslim who plants a tree or cultivates land which provides food for a bird, animal or man”.
a. Explain the above quoted Hadith.
Being a source of benefit to others is a form of charity. A Muslim who plants a tree is doing a great service to the society. The tree provides fruits and flowers, which are used by people. Even if a tree gives neither fruit nor flower, it at least, provides shelter to the people. It gives out oxygen, the source of human survival. Similarly, cultivating a land that provides food for birds, animals and human beings is charity. As long as people, even birds and animals, eat the produce of one’s cultivation, it would be credited as charity in one’s account.
b. Islam is environment-friendly. Justify in the light of the above quoted Hadith.
By calling the act of planting a tree or cultivating a land an act of charity, the Prophet Muhammad (sal-lal-lahu-alahi-wa-sallam) has in fact motivated the Muslims to participate in the conversation of the environment. He has encouraged his followers to adopt environment-friendly attitude in their life. A Muslim, therefore, cannot indulge in deforestation. He/She cannot participate in any act that causes global warming. He/She cannot be a party to death and destruction of birds, animals and human beings. All these teachings are pointers to the fact that Islam is an environment-friendly religion.
8. “Help your brother, be he a wrong-doer or wronged”. Thereupon a man exclaimed, “O Messenger of Allah! I may help if he is wronged, but how could I help a wrongdoer?” The Prophet answered, “You must prevent him from doing wrong: that will be your help to him”.
a. In this hadith, who is being referred to as ‘your brother’?
‘Your brother’ is one’s fellow Muslim, a brother by virtue of one’s faith.
b. When can you consider someone to be wronged and how can you help your brother who is wronged?
When a fellow Muslim becomes a victim of injustice, he is wronged and he needs the help and support from his fellow Muslims. One can help him by raising one’s voice and bringing justice to his case.
c. What does the Prophet mean by ‘Helping a wrongdoer’? Why did the Prophet say this?
Helping a wrongdoer is to prevent him/her from doing wrong. When you stop someone from doing wrong, you in fact prevent crimes being committed in the society. You help the society in the larger interest.
9. “The Believers are like one man: if his eye suffers, his whole body suffers; if his head suffers, his whole body suffers”.
a. Why did the Prophet say, “Believers are like one man”?
The Prophet said, “Believers are like one man”, because Islam wants the Muslims to be united, not divided. Strength lies in solidarity.
b. Explain the above quoted Hadith in your own words.
This Hadith has two meanings. One: Suffering of one Muslim is the suffering of other Muslim. This is because, Muslims are part and parcel of one Ummah, one brotherhood. Two: A Muslim cannot neglect the sufferings of other Muslims. He must feel the problems and sufferings of other Muslims, and come to their rescue. To emphasize these points and to make the Muslims aware of the importance of living in unity, the Prophet has given the example of a whole body suffering because of illness or injury in just one part of the body. What an apt example!
10. If any of you sees something evil, he should set it right by his hand; if he is unable to so, then by his tongue; and if he is unable to do even that, then within his heart – but this is the weakest form of faith”.
a. What do you mean by ‘setting it right by one’s hand’?
Hand symbolizes power and influence. When one sees an evil happening in the society, one should use all powers at one’s disposal to prevent such a thing from happening.
b. What should a true Muslim do, if he/she comes across an evil happening in the society?
He/She should stop it from happening by his/her hand: that it, by using all powers at one’s disposal. However, if one is not able to stop it by his hand that is by force then he/she should speak against it and see to it that the evil act is stopped. If he/she is unable to do even that, then he/she should feel bad about it within one’s heart.
c. What is the weakest form of faith?
The feeling that something evil is happening in the society and that one is unable to stop it with one’s hand or tongue, is the expression of the weakest of faith. Where there is no such feeling, there is no Imaan at all!
11. “The Believers are to one another like a building – each part of it strengthening the others”.
Explain the above quoted Hadith.
Like each part of a building supporting and strengthening its other parts, Muslims must mutually support and strengthen each other. Muslims must adopt caring and sharing attitude and be willing to help each other thereby contributing towards the good of the Islamic society.