So Taught Our Prophet

Hadith 1:
The Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) said: “When a bondsman washes his face, every sin he contemplated with his eyes will be washed away from his face along with the water, or with the last drop of water; when he washes his hands, every sin they wrought will be effaced from his hands with the water, or with the last drop of water; and when he washes his feet, every sin towards his feet have walked will be washed away with the water, or with the last drop, with the result that he comes out pure from all sins.” (Muslim)

1. How does purifying our body reflect our soul’s purification?
The power of the Islamic way of life is in its understanding of the inextricable link between body and soul, worldly experience and spiritual experience, life in this world and life in the Hereafter. The nature of one inspires and reflects the other. Thus by purifying our body we inspire and reflect our soul’s purification.

Hadith 2:
The Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) said: “The word of wisdom is the lost property of the believer, so whenever he finds it he has a better right to it.” (Tirmidhi)

1. ‘Acquiring knowledge is obligatory on Muslims’. Explain.
It is a right and duty of a Muslim to seek knowledge. The Messenger of Allah gave glad tidings to anyone who undertakes the task of seeking knowledge. Abu Hurayrah relates that the Prophet said, “For him who embarks on the path of seeking knowledge, Allah will ease for him the way to Paradise.” (Muslim). When a servant of Allah is granted knowledge, he appreciates Allah’s creation more, and becomes more familiar with Allah’s attributes and qualities. As a result, he sincerely witnesses that his Creator is the only one worthy of worship, and then submits to Him humbly.

2. Why is it important for us to gain knowledge about our surroundings?
We ought to know about our surroundings, our environment. The more we know about Allah’s creation the more we know about Him. If we try to know about Allah, the relationship with Him becomes stronger. Therefore, it is important for us to gain knowledge about our surroundings.

Hadith 3:
Abu Hurayrah reported that a person came to Allah’s Messenger (Peace be upon him) and said: “Who among the people is the most deserving of a fine treatment from me?”
He said: “Your mother.”
He again asked: “Then who (next)?”
He said: “Again it is your mother.”
He said: “Then who?”
He said: “Again it is your mother.”
He said: “Then who?”
Thereupon he said: “Then it is your father.” (Muslim)

1. Why have mothers been given more importance than fathers?
It is a mother who surrenders her own body to exhaustion and pain so it could serve as a vessel for carrying our soul into this world. Such an act deserves great importance. Even after the delivery of the baby, a mother’s responsibilities continue. She feeds them and takes care of them by sacrificing her comforts in the day and her sleep in the night without any greed or compulsion but only out of sheer love and affection. This is why from the most important obligations upon a person is to show gratitude to the mother, and kindness and good companionship with her. And in this matter, she is to be given precedence over the father.

2. Mention an ayah and a hadith related to obedience towards parents.
Allah says: “And your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him. And that you be dutiful to your parents. If one of them or both of them attain old age in your life, say not to them (so much as) “Ugh” (Uff), nor shout at them, and speak to them a generous word”.  [Quran 17: 23]
The Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him), placed kindness and respect towards parents next to prayers:
‘Abdullaah Ibn Mas’ood (May Allah be pleased with him) said: “I asked the Prophet (Peace be upon him), “Which deed is most liked by Allaah?” He said: ‘Prayer offered on time.’ I asked him: ‘Then what? He said, “Kindness and respect towards parents…” [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]

Hadith 4:
The Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him): “O women of the Faithful, do not think it is a little thing which you give to your neighbor even if it is a small part of the leg of a goat.” (Abu Dawud included the addition: ‘Give gifts to each other for surely gifts take away ill-feeling from the hearts.”) (Bukhari)

1. How does giving gifts ‘take away ill-feeling from the hearts.’?
Each individual is responsible for the welfare of others in the community and the community is responsible for him. The smallest gift is a reminder of this, fostering goodness in the soul of the giver and encouraging others to also act righteously.

2. Discuss the importance of generosity among human beings.
A single act of generosity is like a pebble thrown into a pond that creates widening ripples of goodness for us and others. It establishes the spirit of mutual support and co-operation which is essential to Islamic society. It brings people closer to each other by removing greed and jealousy.

Hadith 5:
One day the Prophet (Peace be upon him) was going to Prayer and he saw the people buying and selling. He called to the merchants and traders, so they looked up. The Prophet (Peace be upon him) told them, “Traders will be resurrected on the Day of Judgement as sinners except those who are honest and righteous.” And the Prophet continued: “The honest businessman will be resurrected on the Day of Judgement among the Prophets, with the most truthful and the martyrs.” (Tirmidhi)

1. Mention some advantages of honesty and disadvantages of dishonesty.
When a person is honest, he does not need to give evidence to others for his truthfulness. Such a person is immediately trusted.
Honesty in trading is an act so pleasing to Allah that those who practice will be among the ranks of Allah’s most beloved.
Dishonest person is eventually classified as a liar. No one trusts a single word of a dishonest person.
A dishonest person does not gain success in this world nor in the Hereafter.

2. According to the hadith with whom the honest traders will be resurrected with?
The honest traders will be resurrected with the Prophets, the most truthful and the martyrs.

Hadith 6:
Abu Hurayrah (May Allah be pleased with him) said he heard Allah’s Messenger (Peace be upon him) say: “Swearing produces a ready sale for commodity, but blots out the blessing.” (Muslim)

1. Why is swearing not encouraged is Islam?
Whether the oath is true or not, it degrades the Name of Allah. Swearing very often is a mark of a liar.

2. When is it not necessary to swear by Allah’s name?
To prove that one is being honest or that goods are worth their price. Traders can prove their honesty through their own deeds and history of their dealings.

Hadith 7:
Abu Hurayrah (May Allah be pleased with him) is reported to have heard the Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) as saying: “It is better for one among you to bring a load of firewood on his back, and give charity out of it (and satisfy his own need), and be independent of people, than that he should beg from people whether they give him anything or refuse him. Truly the upper hand is better than the lower hand, and begin (charity) with your dependants.” (Muslim)

1. Where does charity start?
Charity begins at home, by providing the essentials for sustaining one’s own family life.

2. ‘Begging leads to laziness.’ Explain the statement.
When one begs, one is dependent upon others for their livelihood. This eventually causes one to be too lazy to work and stand on one’s own feet, because of being used to that dependence.

3. Is it right to hold certain jobs in contempt?
No, it is not. The dignity of earning one’s own living, however, meager, is to be sought after. Even the poorest gain leads to higher self esteem and heavenly reward if they honestly earn their own income, no matter what their profession is.

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