President's Blog February 2017
The Ideal Muslim Conduct
In the aftermath of the tragic event in Quebec city last week, it is all the more important for a Muslim to exhibit the best of conduct not only with other Muslims, but also with nonMuslim, especially neighbors. The Quran and Sunnah offer many great guidelines on a Muslim’s conduct. A Muslim is of a high moral character. He has an excellent example in the life of the Prophet (s) and the example left by the early Muslims who excelled in all the various fields of human excellence. There is an added surety that the Book he holds and the life accounts of the beloved prophet (s) will guide him to the best way.
The Muslim who understands the teachings of his religion hastens to treat his neighbor in the best way he can. Nothing is too insignificant when it comes to respecting his neighbor, as some ignorant people think they may think something is too small to be worth giving as a gift to a neighbor, so they refrain from giving it, thus depriving themselves and their neighbors of much goodness. This is something the Prophet (s) pointed out to women in particular, as many of them may feel too shy to offer a small gift to a neighbor:
"O Muslim women, do not think that any gift is too insignificant to give to a neighbor, even if it is only a sheep's hoof." (Bukhari and Muslim)
A sheep's hoof is a thing of little value, but it is better than nothing, and no woman should feel that any gift is not worth giving to a neighbor. Allah (S.W.T.) says:
"Then shall anyone who has done an atom´s weight of good, see it! " (Qur´an 99:7)
And the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) said: "Save yourself from the Fire even by giving half a date in charity." (Bukhari)
But this hadith, which is general in application, may also be taken to mean that the recipient should not look down on the gift. The meaning then is: No (female) neighbor should scorn the gift given to her by another (female) neighbor, even if it is it is just a sheep´s hoof. Rather, she should thank her for it, because gratitude engenders friendship among neighbors and encourages mutual support and help. This is in addition to the fact that thanking people for favors is a basic Islamic trait which the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) strongly encouraged:
"The one who does not give thanks to people does not give thanks to Allah (S.W.T.)." (al-Adab al-Mufrid).
May Allah SWT give us the taufiq to display the best conduct towards our families, friends and neighbors and live according to the Quran and Sunnah – in letter and spirit. Ameen.
by Imam Sheharyar Shaikh