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Positive Aspects of Morality in Islam

a) Sadaqa of the Tongue

  • In Form one, we learnt about sadaqa.
  • Sadaqa refers to any act of charity done for the sake of pleasing Allah (SWT).
  • Among the ways of giving sadaqa is by use of the tongue.
  • The Prophet (P.B.U.H) said:
    Every good word is sadaqa.” (Bukhari and Muslim)
  • Umar (RA) narrates that the Prophet (PBUH) said, “May (Allah) have mercy on that servant who gains benefit when he speaks, or one who is protected through maintaining silence. Surely the tongue is the thing which wields the most authority over a person. Be aware that everything that servant speaks is against him, except for the remembrance of Allah, the High, or the commanding of others to that which is right or preventing them from that which is evil, or setting the affair right between two believers.”
  • One of the companions named Ma'adh b. Jabal said, “O' Messenger of Allah! Will we be held accountable for that which we speak?” The Prophet replied, “Is there anything else except an active tongue of a person that will lead him into the hell fire? So then whoever seeks safety (from the fire), then let him protect that which comes out from his tongue.
  • A Muslim should therefore use his tongue to say what is good or remain silent.
  • He should avoid using the tongue in any ways that shall provoke evil like back biting, rumour mongering, telling lies, throwing insults and abuses,cursing, defaming the innocent, recounting the favours done or the charity he or she has given among other evils.
  • Such deeds will disunite the society and lead to hell fire.
  • Muslims should therefore use this precious gift from Allah (SWT) to do what is pleasing to Him.
  • The following are some of the ways in which a Muslim can use his tongue as sadaqa:
    • Saying the truth in testimony and words
    • Forbidding evil deeds and commanding the good.
    • Reciting the Qur’an.
    • Saying the Adhkar i.e. tasbih(subhanallah), tahmid (Alhamdulillah) and tahlililah (la illaha ilaaha illallah)
    • Bringing peace and reconciliation
    • Giving admonition and advices to fellow Muslims and even to non Muslims.
    • Acting with justice between two people.

b) Appreciation and Gratitude (Shukr)

  • Shukr or gratitude means the act of showing sincere appreciation in return for the good things, assistance or favours done to you by someone.
  • In Islam, gratitude is given much importance and emphasis.
  • Allah (SWT) has created human being with needs and desires that require satisfaction.
  • He has also created everything for the service of man.
  • The trees that provide shed, flowing rivers that provide water for irrigation and domestic use, the day that is meant for work, the night that is for rest, fruits in different shades and shapes among others.
  • Allah has placed all this on earth so that man can be able to get his needs.
  • It is therefore very important that man should thank Allah for these bounties given to him and extend the same gratitude for the good things done to him by his fellow human beings and other creatures.
  • Emphasis on the importance of gratitude is given in the following verses:
  • Allah (SWT) says,
    And remember! Your Lord caused to be declaired (publicly): “If you are grateful, I will ad more (favours) unto you; but if ye show ingratitude, truly My punishment is terrible indeed.” [Q14:7]
  • Allah (SWT) says,
    We bestowed (in the past) wisdom on Luqman: “Show (thy) gratitude to Allah.” Any who is (so) grateful, does so to the profit of his own soul; but if any is ungrateful, verily Allah is free of all wants, worthy of all praise.” [Q 31:12]

Ways in which a Muslim can show gratitude

  • Praising the name of Allah (SWT)
  • Engaging in acts of worship like swalat.
  • Being thankful for the help given to us by others.
  • The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Anyone who doesn’t thank people has not thanked Allah.” (Abu-Dawud & Tirmidhi)
  • Giving out zakat and sadaqa to the less fortunate
  • Being patient when misfortune befalls us.

c) Forgiveness

  • Allah (SWT) has created human beings with an intellect and a sense of responsibility.
  • Someone who does not have the intellect may miss tobe responsible.
  • For example children who are immature are not held responsible of their actions, because their intellect has not yet developed.
  • Likewise, the insane are not responsible, because they have lost their intellectual capacity.
  • Even though human beings have the intellect sometimes we make mistakes either deliberately or unintentionally.
  • When we fall into error or commit mistakes, we should repent and ask for forgiveness.
  • Forgiveness involves feeling sorry for the offence done and not repeating it.
  • Forgiveness is among the attributes of Allah (SWT).
  • He is Al Ghafur (The Most Forgiving).
  • Allah (SWT) says in surah al Nur:
    Let them pardon and forgive. Do you not love that Allah should forgive you? And Allah is Oft- Forgiving Most Merciful.”[Q 24:22]
  • The above verse encourages Muslims to be ready to forgive his fellow Muslims who ask for his forgiveness.
  • We should restrain from holding grudges or revenging against our fellow human beings since Allah (SWT) readily forgives those who are quick at pardoning others.
  • The prophet (PBUH) encourages us to repeatedly pray to Allah (SWT) to forgive us.
  • In a hadith narrated by Al-Agharr, the Prophet (PBUH) said:
    O people! Repent to Allah and seek for His forgiveness. I repent to Him in a day 100 times.” (Muslim)
  • The Prophet (PBUH) displayed the act of forgiveness in several situations. 
  • Islamic teachings on forgiveness
    • Allah (SWT) is oft forgiving.
    • Allah (SWT) is ready to forgive those who ask for His forgiveness.
    • Allah (SWT) may forgive all those He wishes to forgive. Allah (SWT) says, “…weather you show what is in your mind or conceal it, Allah calls you to account for it. He forgives whom He pleases, and punishes whom He pleases.” [Q 2:284]
    • Muslims should forgive those who wrong them even when they are angry. Allah (SWT) says,
      Those who avoid the greater crimes and shameful deeds, and, when they are angry even then forgive.” [Q 42:37]
    • Muslims are commanded to ask for Allah’s forgiveness. “… ‘we hear, and we obey: (we seek) Your forgiveness, our Lord, and to You is the end of all journeys.” [Q 2:285]
    • Angels pray for forgiveness of all human beings on earth. Allah (SWT) says, “The heavens are almost rent asunder from above them (By His Glory): And the Angels celebrate the Praises of their Lord, and pray for forgiveness for all beings on earth: Behold! Verily Allah is He, the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Q 42:5]
    • Allah (SWT) is ready to forgive those who avoid great sins and shameful deeds.

d) Justice (Adl)

Read [Q 5:8]

  • Adl is an Arabi word derived from the term ‘Adala’ which means to justify or bring fairness and equality.
  • The Islamic implication of ‘Adl encompasses fairness and equity in every thing that is said or done with respect to our comments, decisions, roles and accountability.
  • The society that Islam wants to develop can be precisely described by the words of Allah (SWT) in the Qur’an:
    Verily, Allah commands justice, the doing of good, and liberating the kith and kin, and he forbids all shameful deds, and injustice and rebellion: He instructs you, that you may receive admonition.”[Q16:90]
  • Justice is a virtue that brings a Muslim closer to Allah as the messenger of Allah teaches in his words narrated by Abu Said (RA) that the Prophet (PBUH) said,
    The most dear to Allah SWT and closest to Him on the Day of Judgement will be the person in authority who was fair and equitable. The most disliked and the most severely punished will be the person in authority who was unjust.”(At-Tirmidhi)
  • A Muslim should display justice in the following situations:
    • While distributing the inheritance to the heirs.
    • In the family the husband must show justice among his wives and children.
    • In making judgement a Muslim should be fair to both parties involved. Allah (SWT) says, “Allah does command you to render back your Trusts to those to whom they are due; And when you judge between man and man, That you judge with justice: Verily how excellent is the teaching which He gives you…” [Q 4:58]
    • Distribution of the property for zakat should be done farely.
    • Keeping property of someone. Do not squander or misuse the property under your care.
    • We must be just while executing our day to day activities. This includes; completing tasks assigned to us, being fair in the distribution of resources to in our charge among others.
    • A leader should be just to his subject.
    • Muslims must be just while giving testimony. Allah (SWT) says, “O you who believe! Stand out firmly forjustice as witnesses to Allah, even as against yourselves, or your parents or your kin,and weather it be (against) rich or poor…” [Q 4:135]

Hadith on Justice

  • Abu Huraira (RA) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: “Verily, you will give back all dues to those entitled to them on the day of judgement, so much that the hornless sheep will get its due from the horned one.” (Muslim)
  • Aisha (RA) narrated that: “He who takes without right a hand span of earth wil have it suspended in his neck sevenfold.” (Bukhari and Muslim).
  • Abu Umama Lyas bin Tha’laba Al Harith (RA) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Whoever takes that which is rightful property of a Muslim by delivering a (false) oath will be written by God for Hell fire, and he will be forbidden paradise.” A man asked, “O Messenger of Allah, even if it is a slight thing?” He answered, “Even if a twig of a shrub.” (Muslim)

Dimensions of Morality in Islam

a) Spiritual observance and their Moral Implication.

Read [Q 2:183][Q 29:45]

  • In Islam, the acts of devotion are meant to not only uplift the Iman of a Muslim but also to shape their morals.
  • The five pillars of Islam encompass the basic moral obligations of a Muslim.
  • These pillars include; Swalat, zakat, Hajj and Saum.
  • Let us now discuss how each of these acts of worship regulates the moral behavior of a Muslim.

i) Swalat

  • Swalat is the second among the five pillars of Islam.
  • Allah (SWT) has prescribed the establishment of swalat in the Qur’an.
  • Allah (SWT) says,
    Nay, seek (Allah’s) help with patient perserverance and prayer: It is indeed hard, except to those who bring a lowly spirit.” [Q 2:45]
  • Muslims should always remember Allah (SWT) constantly through regular prayer in order to avoid evil and shameful deed.
  • Allah (SWT) says,
    “…and establish regular prayer: for prayer restrains from shamefull and evil deeds...” [Q 29:45]
  • Through swalat, a Muslim is able to bring himself or herself closer to Allah (SWT) and stays away from evil deeds.
  • The prophet (PBUH) asked his companions, “If one of you had a river by his door in which he bathed five times a day, will any filth remain on him?” They replied, “No.” Then the Prophet added, ‘Likewise, Allah wipes away sins with the five daily prayers.” (Muslim)

Moral Implications of Swalat

  • It trains muslim to avoid evil and shameful deeds
  • It promotes equality as it levels all differences among Muslims e.g colour, ranks, status and nationality.
  • It brings cohension and unity among Muslims who frequently socialiseafter the Swalat
  • It encourages time conscious to Muslims because Swalat has its prescribed time.
  • It instills virtues such as self disciplenie, love, peace respect, gentleness harmony among others.

ii) Zakat

  • All things belong to Allah and man has been given the responsibility to take care of them.
  • We have earlier learnt that the man is supposed to be grateful to his creator for all the favours he has given him.
  • One of the ways of showing this gratitude is through giving Zakat.
  • This is a moral obligation that has been ordained by Allah.
  • Allah (SWT) says,
    And be steadfast in prayer and regular in charity: And whatever good you send forth for your souls before you, ye shall find it with Allah: For Allah sees well all that you do.”[Q 2:110]

Moral Implications of Zakat

  • It enhances the sense of responsibility in that the giver feels obliged to perform the acts as an obligatory duty upon him.
  • It promotes loyalty to Allah which is an aspect of integrity.
  • It assists in curbing vises such as theft by regulating the owning of resource in the society.
  • It improves relationship among people as it removes jealousy and envy.
  • It reduces extravagance and greed of wealth to the giver.
  • It curbs unfair distribution of wealth in that only the rightful recipients are given.
  • It boosts brotherhood and unity in the society.

iii) Saum

  • Saum is the fourth pillar of Islam.
  • It is obligatory upon every mature and sane Muslim to observe fast dung the month of Ramadhan.
  • Observing saum sincerely shields a Muslim from many vices.
  • Abu Huraira (RA) narrated that Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) said:
    Saum (fasting) is a shield (or a screen or a shelter from the Hellfire). So, the person observing Saum (fast) should avoid sexual relations with his wife and should not behave foolishly and impudently, and if somebody fights with him or abuses him, he should say to him twice, ‘I am observing Saum (fast).’” The Prophet (may peace be upon him) added, “By Him in Whose Hands my soul is, the smell coming out from the mouth of a person observing Saum (fast) is better with Allâh than the smell of musk. (Allâh says about the fasting person), ‘He has left his food, drink and desires for My sake. The Saum (fast) is for Me, So I will reward the fasting person for it…’” (Bukhari)
  • This hadith emphasises on the moral benefits of fasting.

Moral Implications of Saum

  • We control ourselves against lies and backbiting (gheebat).
  • We promote the virtue of peace and harmony.
  • We learn self control and self denial.
  • We become helpful and well behaved.
  • To control our tempers and be in control of ourselves
  • It instills patience with others and to be more considerate of them.
  • The virtue of kindness, humility and care for others are enhanced.
  • Shielding one from all forms of evils.
  • Promoting brotherhood and unity.
  • Instilling a sense of discipline through restraining oneself from all evils.
  • Helping Muslims to control his or her desires.
  • One gets a peace of mind and tranquility during the month.
  • A Muslim gets rid of undesirable habits such as backbiting, rumour mongering among others.

iv) Hajj

  • Even though the performance of Hajj purifies a believer’s heart and increases his or her iman, this spiritual journey as well shapes the morals of a Muslim.

Moral Implications of Hajj

  • Hajj creates unity and brotherhood among Muslims from different parts of the world.
  • The restrictions of Ihram promote peace and harmony i.e no deliberate killing and uprooting green vegetation.
  • It promotes equality because of the same Ihram and the performance of other numerous acts of worth.
  • It discourages social prejudices because it has been ordained to all Muslims.
  • We learn self control the rules of Hajj when we abide by the rules of hajj.
  • By observing the rites of Ihram, the Hujjaj become disciplined.
  • Muslims control their tempers and practice self control amidst the largest congregation.
  • It inculcates the moral superiority of having accomplished one of the greatest activities that please Allah (SWT).
  • It is a turning point of the life of a Muslim after renewing the moral life.
  • It promotes a social tie between strangers who go for hajj.
  • A Muslim is pleased by the chance to see the sceneries of Islamic attraction
  • It helps Muslims to keep away from non-islamic influences.

Preventive and Precautionary Morality

a) Prohibitions of certain foods and drinks

  • Foods and drinks nourish our health growth and state of mind.
  • We are encouraged to eat good and lawful foods.
  • Islam aims at establishing a healthy and moral society.
  • It has therefore permitted the eating of only good, pure and wholesome foods and drinks.
  • Allah (SWT) says in the Qura’n, “O you who believe! Eat of what is on earth lawfull and good. And do not follow the footsteps of the evil one, for he is to you a vowed enemy.”[Q 2:168]
  • In the above verse, Allah refers to foods that are good, pure, clean, wholesome and pleasing to taste.
  • Muslims should eat that which is permitted by the Sharia as stipulated in the Qura’n and Sunnah.
  • Allah (SWT) says: “They ask you (O Prophet) what is made lawful for them. Say: All good and wholesome things are made lawful for you.”
  • This is emphasized by the following verse: “O you who believe! Eat of the good things wherewith We have provided for you.”[Q 2:172]
    Forbidden to you (for food) are: dead meat, blood, the flesh of swine, and that on which hath been invoked the name of other than Allah.”[Q 5:3]

1. Dead animals.

  • Such animals are prohibited because;
    • Eating them lowers the dignity of human beings.
    • The flesh of the animal may be harmful as a result of chronic disease or eating poisonous things.
    • It is the will of Allah that the flesh of such animals provides food for other carnivourous animals.
    • Allah wants the owner of the animal to take good care of it so that it may not die from malnutrition, diseases or as a result of neglect lest it dies and be wasted.
    • The name of Allah has not been mentioned over the animal.

2. Flowing blood

  • This is the blood flowing from either a dead or live animal due to sustained injury.
  • Such blood has been prohibited due to the following reasons:
    • Blood is Najs (najasatul Mutawaswita)
    • Such blood may be carrying some bacteria which can lead to infections.
    • It is ditasteful to the human decency.
    • Allah also wishes that man should extend mercy to the animals and be kind to them.

3. Pork/ swine.

  • Allah prohibits the eating of pigs.
  • The meat of a pig is prohibited for a Muslim.
  • The Holy Qur’an explains this clearly when Allah (SWT) says:
    Forbidden to you (for food) are dead: meat, blood, the flesh of swine, and that on which hath been invoked in the name of Allah; That which hath been killed by strangling, or by a violent blow, or by a headlong fall, or by being gored to death; That which hath been (partly) eaten by a wild animal; unless ye are able to slaughter it ( in due form);that which is sacrified on stone (alters); (Forbidden) also is the division (of meat) by raffling with arrows: that is impunity…”[Q 5:3]
    He hath only forbidden to your dead meat, and blood, and the flesh of swine, and that on which any other name hath been involved besides that of Allah. But if one is forced by necessity, without willful disobedience, Nor transgressing due limits - . Then is he guiltless. For Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.”[Q 2:173]
  • The following are some of the reasons identifying why pigs are prohibited in Islam.
    • Pigs have been classified as haram by Allah (SWT) and Najs.
    • A pig is a filthy animal which eats everything. Man has been created with dignity and Allah wants us to safeguard this dignity by avoiding anything that is filthy.
    • It is injurious to the health as it carries dangerous bacteria called trichina.
    • Pork contains a lot of fat which may cause health problems.

4. Animals slaughtered on an altar

  • The intention of slaughtering animals on the alter is not for the sake of Allah (SWT).
  • It may be for the sake of ancestors or other sacrificial reasons.
  • Islam teaches us to sacrifice only for the sake of Allah and to provide a meal.
  • It is ungrateful to slaughter in the honour of creations or human beings when Allah is the sole creator.
  • Allah (SWT) says:
    Eat not meat on which Allah’s name has not been mentioned.”[Q 6:121]
  • These animals are prohibited so as:
    • To safeguard the belief in the Oneness of Allah (SWT).
    • To purify worship.
    • To protect the rights of the animals by avoiding taking their lives unnecessarily.
    • To fight shirk and polytheism.

5. The strangled animals, animals that are beaten to death or die by a fall

  • If an animal is strangled or beaten using a club or stones and dies before it is properly slaughtered, then its meat is prohibited.
  • This is because cruelty has been applied to it yet Islam teaches us to be kind to animals.
  • The animal beaten or one that dies from a fall has not shed any blood yet sheddin of blood is a condition during slaughtering in order to drain blood and remove harmful germs.
  • Also, Allah’s name has not been invoked on them.

6. Animals killed by goring of horns.

  • Some communities have the customs of encouraging animals to fight against each other as a sport.
  • This is not allowed in Islam.
  • In the event that one of the animals involved in the fight dies, then its meat is prohibited.
  • Islam encourages us to take good care of animals so as to protect the life of the animal.

7. Meat which has been partially eaten by an animal.

  • This is distasteful and lowers the dignity of man to the level of an animal.
  • It is also important to avoid such meat in order to guard ones health from infectious diseases.
  • It also encourages the hunter to train his hunting animals properly.

8. Alcohol and all other drinks that intoxicate

  • have been prohibited because they interfere with the normal functioning of mind and body.

b) Vain talks

Read Qur’an: [Q 23:3] [Q 31:19]

  • This refers to useless talks.
  • They are irrelevant and nonsensical.
  • The Prophet said: “verily, Allah Has made it unlawful for you; disobedience of mothers, burrying alive of infant babies and the refusal of giving and asking to be given. And He has hated for you: saying it is so and so who said, the asking many unnecessary questions and the wastage of money.
  • In surah al Mu’minun, the signs of a believer are explained.
  • Among them, Allah (SWT) has mentioned those who avoid vain talks.
  • Allah (SWT) says,
    The believers must (eventually) win through. Those who humble themselves in their prayers; Who avoid vain talks.”[Q 23:1-3]
  • A believer should engage in useful talk and avoid indulging in idleness and ridicule.
  • A Muslim should avoid places which will encourage idle talk.
  • These places may include; alleys, social places, barazas or gossip corners.

Effects of vain talks

  • Leads to quarrels and misunderstanding
  • The habit may lead to backbiting which is haram
  • It wastes time that would be used for other activities.
  • It promotes other vices such as telling lies, belittling others, among others.
  • Those involved may end up missing acts of worship like swalat.
  • They promote idleness and laziness.

c) Abortion

  • Abortion means the intentional termination of a pregnancy before the completion of its period.
  • This is prohibited in Islam and is considered as killing an innocent soul.
  • Fear of poverty, hunger, disability, psychological torture or any ‘unwantedness’ does not morally or socially justify abortion.
  • Allah says in the Qur’an,
    Kill not your children for fear of want: we shall provide sustenance for them as well as for you. Verily the killing the of them is great sin.”[Q 17:31]
  • Allah (SWT) says in the Qur’an,
    Say: ‘Come I will rehearse what Allah has (really) prohibited you from.’ Join not anything with Him; Be good to your parents; kill not your children on a plea of want; We provide sustenance for you and for them; come not near to indecent deeds, whether open or secret; take not life which Allah has made sacred except by way of justice and law.” [Q 6:151]
  • Even though we have metioned that abortion is prohibited, there are some reasons that may lead to termination of the pregnancy.
  • However, in an extreamly rare case, abortion is permissible.
  • This happens when a reliable doctor declares with reasonable certainty that the continuation of pregnancy will endanger the mother’s life.
  • Abortion is therefore allowed in order to save the life of the mother.

Effects of abortion

  • It may result to the death of the mother.
  • It may lead to infertility.
  • Future prematurity in birth
  • Abortion may harm a woman’s reproductive system, damaging her uterus or cervix, leading to future reproductive problems.
  • It causes mental and psychological torture to the victim.

d) Slander

  • This is the habit of orally defaming someone by giving false statements against a person in order to make him appear evil.
  • It is telling others untrue statements about another person.
  • Islam discourages slander in both Qur’an and Hadith. Allah says: “As for those who launch a charge against a chaste woman and produce not four witnesses, flog them with 80 stripes and reject their evidence ever after; for such men are wicked transgressors.” [Q24:4]
  • The Prophet as well mentions that we should avoid mentioning other people’s shortcomings.

Effects of slander

  • It causes enmity among the people.
  • It may hinder peaceful co-existence among members of the society.
  • It promotes other vices such as vain talks and cheating.
  • Mistrust may develop among married partners leading to divorce.
  • It lowers the dignity of those who slander and spoils the name of the one who is slandered.
  • It may lead to psychological problems to both parties who may feel ashamed and thus withdrawing from the rest of the society.

e) Israf

  • The term ‘Israf’ is derived from an Arabic word ‘Sarafa’ which means to go beyond, surpass or go over the limit of something.
  • Technically, Israaf means extravagance or exceeding any legal, moral, or ethical limits.
  • It is excessive expenditure on anything.
  • Islam is extreamly against the wastage of anything.
  • Allah hates those people who are extravagant.
  • Allah (SWT) says,
    “…And eat and drink but waste not by extravagance: surely He does not love the extravagant.” [Q 7:31]
  • One should not be extravagant in satiating one’s hunger, thirst or lust [7:81]. One should also not be extravagant in one’s expenditure.
  • Allah (SWT) says,
    And render to the kindren their due rights, as (also) to those in want, and to the wayfarer: But squander not (your wealth) in the manner of a spendthrift.”[Q 17:26].
  • “(One of the signs of those who are truly obedient to Allah is that) when they spend, they are neither extravagant and nor niggardly, but hold a just (balance) between those (extremes)” [Q 25:67]

Reasons for prohibition of Israf

  • Allah (SWT) hates those who are wasteful. Allah (SWT) says, “O children of Adam! Wear your beautifu apparel at every time and place of prayer: eat and drink: But waste not by excess, for Allah loves not the wasters.”[Q 7:31]
  • Israf is a sign of ungratefulness to the creator who Has put all His creation in the service of man.
  • Israf is a sinful act that will lead a person to hell fire.
  • It promotes vices such as greediness, pride and selfishness.
  • Islam is a religion of moderation yet Israf is against the principles of moderation.
  • It breeds irresponsibility and lack of care for those who do not have.
  • It brings about envy and jealously to those who do not have thus destroying good relationship among people in the society.
  • Wastage of resources deprives others who may be in need an opportunity to benefit from the blessings of Allah (SWT) and lead to poverty.
  • Allah removes his blessings among those who are wasteful.

Islamic Manners

  • Manners of a particular group of persons emanate from their cultural beliefs and civilization so as to promote social cohesion, order, stability and identification.
  • Culture of a people refers to the way of life of the people.
  • Islamic culture is the Muslim way of life in relation with the teachings of the Qura’n and Hadith of the Prophet.
  • Civilization on the other hand is an ideal state of social development characterized by absence of barbarism and irrational behavior.
  • Islamic culture gives guidance to the Muslims on how they should potray themselves in every aspect of life.
  • In this chapter, we shall look at the teachings of Islam on the following:

a) Manners of Walking (Q 31:18)

  • Walk in a manner that is moderate; not too fast nor too slow.
  • Recite a dua before you start walking. i.e. Bismillah Tawakkaltu alallahi
  • Walk with humility without pride or arrogance.
  • Lower your gaze and occasionally look right or left or sideways.
  • Avoid dragging or stamping your shoes or feet.
  • Avoid walking in between members of the opposite sex.
  • Remove any harmful objects from the way as you are walking.
  • Its encouraged to walk on the right hand side.
  • Avoid throwing anything on the way or spitting all over.
  • Avoid standing in the middle of the way.
  • Greet the people you meet.

b) Islamic Manners of Eating

  • Recite a dua before you start eating.
  • Wash both your hands before taking the meal.
  • Eat using your right hand.
  • Eat good and halaal food.
  • Avoid over eating.
  • Take water in between your meals.
  • Thank Allah after you finish eating.
  • It is Sunnah to eat using three fingers.
  • Eat in small portions.
  • Do not criticize the food you are eating even if it is not good.
  • Eat while you are sitting down.
  • Minimal conversation is allowed.
  • Avoid talking while you have food in your mouth.
  • If you are eating in a group, eat the food that is infront of you.
  • Invite others to join you and share the food.

Discouraged acts while eating

  • Eating while you are not hungry
  • Blowing on the food or drink
  • Over eating.
  • Gazing at others while they are eating.

Hadith on Eating and Drinking

  • Umar ibn Abu Salama (RA) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said to me, “(Start your meal) in the Name of Allah, eat with our right hand, and eat from (the plate) which is next to you”. (Al Bukhari and Muslim)
  • Abu Huraira (RA) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) never found fault with any food. If he desired it, he ate it; and if he disliked it he would just leave it.
  • Ibn Abbas (RA) relates that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Do not drink in one gulp (sip) like a camel does; drink in two or three sips (pausing for breath between sips), mention the name of Allah when you start and praise Him when you finish.” (At-Tirmidhi)
  • Abu Huraira (RA) relates that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) interdicted drinking directly from a mouth of a water skin or a vessel.” (Al Bukhari and Muslim)
  • Ibn Abbas (RA) narrates that the Prophet (PBUH) interdicted breathing in the vessel or blowing in it. (At- Tirmidhi and he said it is a Hasan and authentic hadith)

c) Islamic Manners on Sleeping

  • Before sleeping, cup your hands together, blow into them gently and read Surat ul Ikhlas, Surat ul Falaq and Surat un Naas. Pass hands over most of the body, starting from the head downwards, three times.
  • A Muslim should go to bed early. The Prophet (P.B.U.H) said: “after the time of Isha prayer, you may either keep awake for the purpose of remembering Allah (SWT) or talk over necessary matters with your family.”
  • Recite a dua before you sleep.The following is one of the supplication before going to sleep or times loneliness or depression during fear to go to sleep,:
    “Audhu bikalimaati lahi taammat min ghadahabihi wa iqaabihi, washarri ibaadihi, wa min hamazaatish-shaitwaan wa an yahdhuruuni.” Which means: “I seek refuge in the perfect Words of Allah from His anger and His punishment, from the evil of His slaves and from the mockery of devils and their presence.”
  • Start sleeping by lying on your right side.
  • Take ablution before you go to bed.
  • Ensure you clean your body off any dirt.
  • Cover your nakedness.
  • Avoid lying on your stomach.
  • Recite a dua in case you wake up in the middle of the night.
    “Laailaha illallaahul waahidil Qahhaaru, Rabbus samaawaati wal ardh wamaa bainahumal Aziizul Ghaffaar.” Which means: “There is none to be worshipped but Allah, the One, the Victorious, Lord of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them, the Almighty, the All- Forgiving.”

Hadith on Sleeping

  • Hudhaifa (RA) narrated that, “When the Prophet (PBUH) lay down for sleep at night, he used to put his hand under his neck and say the following prayer, “O God, In your name I die and I live,” When he walk up, he used to say, “Praise be to God, Who Has brought us back to life after death after He Has caused us to die, and to Him belongs the return.” (Al- Bukhari).

d) Islamic Manners of Dress

Read Qur’an: [Q 7:26][Q 16:81][Q 21:31]

  • Recite a dua before putting on a dress. i.e. “
    “Alhamdulillaahil ladhii kasaanii haadha (ath-thawba) warazaqanii min ghairi hawlin minnii walaa quwwatin”.
    “Praise be to Allah who has clothed me with this (garment) and provided it for me though I was powerless myself and incapable.”
  • Shake the cloth before wearing.
  • Do not trail your dress.
  • Do not wear dresses that resemble those of people of other faiths.
  • Start by putting on the right side first.
  • Wear warm dress in cold weather and cool dress in hot weather.
  • Put on clean and presentable clothes.
  • The dressing should not expose the aura for both male and female.
  • He should not wear clothes meant for the opposite gender.
  • It should be thick enough to avoid being swayed by the wind.
  • The cloth should not be transparent.

Dress for a Muslim man

  • He should avoid wearing silk or gold. The prophet stated, “Do not wear silk for the one who wears it in this world will not wear it in the hereafter.” (Bukhari and Muslim)
    Ali (RA) narrated that, ‘I have seen the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) taking silk in his right hand and gold in his left hand and saying, “ these two are prohibited for the males of my Umma ( followers/community’).” (Abu Dawud)
  • The garment should not go below the ankles. It is narrated by Abu Huraira that the Prophet (PBUH) said, “Whatever of the lower garment is beneath the ankles is in the fire.” (Bukhari)
  • It is preferred to wear white clothes. The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Wear white clothing for it is purer and better.” (An Nasai)
  • It should not resemble the dress of a woman.

Dress for a Muslim woman

  • It should cover all her aura (the whole body except the hands and the face).
  • It should not be transparent in a manner that it reveals her body.
  • It should not resemble the dress of the men.
  • It should not be tight fitting to display her figure.
  • It should not be too colourful such that it will attract the men.
  • It should not be too long or too short.
  • Avoid wearing perfume when going out of the home.
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