Saturday, July 19, 2003

Living the Quran
Unity of Hearts

Al-Hijr (The Rock)
Chapter 15: Verse 47

"We shall have removed from their hearts any lurking feelings of malice, [and they shall rest] as brothers, face to face, on raised couches."

This faith is remarkable indeed. When it touches people's hearts, it pours into them a mixture of love, familiarity and compassion that is certain to soften them and establish between them a firm and deeply-rooted bond. Words, looks, touches and heartbeats all become lyrics and odes expressing mutual love, compassion, loyalty, support and forbearance. What is the secret of such a profound transformation? The secret is known only to God. However, its effects are clear to the believers themselves.

The Prophet, peace be upon him, said: "Some of God's Servants who are neither prophets nor martyrs shall have on the Day of Judgement a position so close to God that prophets and martyrs would love to have." His companions said: "Messenger of God, will you please tell us who these people are." He said: "They are people who love one another for God's sake only. They have no relation of kinship or business interests with one another. By God, their faces are radiant with light, and they have light. They shall have no fear or sadness when other people are overtaken by fear and sadness." [Related by Abu Dawud.]

The Prophet also said: "When a Muslim meets his Muslim brother and they shake hands, their sins shall fall of just like leaves fall off a dry tree on a windy day. Their sins shall be forgiven, even though they appear to be as huge as sea foam." [Related by al-Tabarani.]

God's messenger made several statements on this point. His actions confirm that such love, and unity constitutes an essential factor in his message. The community that he built on the basis of love provides the best proof that such love was not merely flowery words or idealistic actions by a few individuals. It was a firmly established reality that came into being by God's will. It is only He who can bring about such a real unity of hearts.

"In The Shade of the Quran" - Syed Qutb, Vol. 7, pp. 195, 196

Understanding the Prophet's Life
Best Type of Earning

Islam through the example of the Prophet, peace be upon him, and the rightly guided Caliphs, demonstrates the importance of trade or business. Abu Bakr ran a cloth business, Umar had a corn trading business, and Uthman also had a cloth business. The Ansar among the Companions of the Prophet, may Allah be pleased with them, engaged in farming. In fact, except for the trades that have been prohibited, Islam actively encourages Muslims to get involved in business and commerce:

Allah's messenger was asked what type of earning was best and replied, "A man's work with his hand and every business transaction which is approved."

Reported by Rafi ibn Khadij, Mishkat al Masabih, hadith no. 2783

"Islamic Business Ethics" - Rafik Issa Beekun, p. 31

Islamic Manners
Keeping Secrets

Thabit (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) said:

“The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) came to me while I was playing with the boys. He greeted us and sent me on an errand. This delayed my return to my mother. When I came to her, she asked, "What detained you?'' I said; "Messenger of Allah sent me on an errand.'' She asked, "What was it?'' I said, "It is a secret.'' My mother said; "Do not disclose to anyone the secret of Messenger of Allah.'' Anas said to Thabit: By Allah, were I to tell it to anyone I would have told you." [Muslim]

Here, an emphasis has been laid on keeping a secret. When Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) told his mother about the cause of secrecy, she refrained from insisting that the secret should be disclosed to her. Rather, she lent support to her son's standpoint and advised him to conceal the secret. To be sure, it is part of moral teaching that we should keep the secrets of friends in our hearts. Unless we receive a go-ahead from a friend, we must not make his secret public.

Source: "Riyad-us-Saliheen" - Abu Zakariya Yahya

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