Respecting elders and being kind to kids

The Status of Good Manners in Islam

A Muslim can’t be a true Muslim if he does all kinds of worship, i.e. prayer, fast, zakat, pilgrimage, etc. in the best way but neglects an important side of his worship i.e. Adab or good manners. A person who offers his daily prayers in mosques timely and in a proper way, but when it comes to dealing with other people in his daily life he is the worst person, cannot be considered a true Muslim. There is no one in a good manner other than our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAW). Allah says:

وَاعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ وَلَا تُشْرِكُوا بِهِ شَيْئًا وَبِالْوَالِدَيْنِ إِحْسَانًا وَبِذِي الْقُرْبَىٰ وَالْيَتَامَىٰ وَالْمَسَاكِينِ وَالْجَارِ ذِي الْقُرْبَىٰ وَالْجَارِ الْجُنُبِ وَالصَّاحِبِ بِالْجَنبِ وَابْنِ السَّبِيلِ وَمَا مَلَكَتْ أَيْمَانُكُمْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُحِبُّ مَن كَانَ مُخْتَالًا فَخُورًا

“Worship Allah and associate nothing with Him, and to parents do good, and to relatives, orphans, the needy, the near neighbour, the neighbour farther away, the companion at your side, the traveller, and those whom your right hands possess. Indeed, Allah does not like those who are self-deluding and boastful.” (Surah An-Nisa 4:36)

Islam, advising and calling each other to do good and to stop that which is evil. We should try to teach the younger ones good manners. The best way to teach is to first practice it ourselves. We must be always thankful for what Allah has given to us, for everything that exists in the universe belongs to him.

Good Manners in a Corrupt World

The issue of good manners is very important In Islam since it is the basis of one’s success in the Islamic community. A Muslim can’t be a true Muslim if he does his Ibadaat (worshipping, i.e prayers, fasts, zakat..etc)very well but neglects an important side of his worship i.e Akhlaaq. The significance of goodness of character is apparent from the fact that Allah Almighty sent down all His Prophets to teach their respective nations about adopting moral and ethical behaviour. Allah says:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَكُونُوا مَعَ الصَّادِقِينَ

“O you, who have believed, fear Allah and be with those who are true.” (Surah At-Tawbah, 9: 119)

This is true of people who backbite, spread hate and evil among people, treat those who are under his care (family, employees…etc) cruelly and lie. Yet people who are like this are still proud of themselves and think that they are guaranteed a place in Jannah because of their prayers? With regards to backbiting, Allah says:

قَدْ أَفْلَحَ ٱلْمُؤْمِنُونَ * ٱلَّذِينَ هُمْ فِي صَلاَتِهِمْ خَاشِعُونَ * وَٱلَّذِينَ هُمْ عَنِ ٱللَّغْوِ مُّعْرِضُونَ

“The believers must (eventually) win through, Those who humble themselves in their prayers, Who avoid vain talk.” (Surah Al-Mu’minun 23:1-3)

Importance, having good manners is not always easy especially when having to deal with all sorts of people in today’s world. It takes a heartbeat to snipe at another person or to behave condescendingly without realizing it. And us Muslims must adopt the Sunnah and disposition of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) being the followers of the religion He has taught us about. The Prophet, being as human as he was, was also conscientious of how he behaved in public. He made sure he remained humble by supplicating to God to bless him with the best of manners:

“O, Allah! I ask You for good health, for trust, for self-control, for good manners, and to be satisfied with the divine decree.” (Al-Bukhari)

The Definition of MANNERS:

  • A way of doing something or how a thing is done or happens
  • A person’s outward bearing or way of behaving toward others
  • Believing in what Allah says when it comes to you
  • The socially correct way of acting; etiquette
  • Practice, style, execution, or method in the arts
  • A way of acting; bearing or behaviour
  • Accepting His decree with patience
  • Social behaviour or habits
  • Away in which a thing is done or happens
  • Implementing His rules and orders in your life
  • Polite or well-bred social behaviour:   didn’t your mother teach you any manners?
  • The prevailing customs, social conduct, and norms of a specific society, period, or group, especially as the subject of a literary work

لَّقَدْ كَانَ لَكُمْ فِي رَسُولِ اللَّهِ أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ لِّمَن كَانَ يَرْجُو اللَّهَ وَالْيَوْمَ الْآخِرَ وَذَكَرَ اللَّهَ كَثِيرًا

“Certainly, it is for you in (the) Messenger (of) Allah an excellent example for (one) who has hope (in) Allah and the Day the Last, and remembers Allah much.” (Surah Al-Ahzab 33:21)

Good manners encompass a wide range of social etiquette, from speaking to groups in public; to avoiding backbiting or fault-finding; to speaking pleasantly of others but to avoiding excessive flattery. Having good manners is very important for all believers. The Prophet also encouraged giving gifts to one another, as long as it was done fairly and not in excess. Speaking in humility was also equally important. With regards to parents, Allah says:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَأْمُرُكُمْ أَن تُؤَدُّوا الْأَمَانَاتِ إِلَىٰ أَهْلِهَا وَإِذَا حَكَمْتُم بَيْنَ النَّاسِ أَن تَحْكُمُوا بِالْعَدْلِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ نِعِمَّا يَعِظُكُم بِهِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ سَمِيعًا بَصِيرًا

“Indeed, Allah orders you to render the trusts to their owners, and when you judge between the people to judge with justice. Indeed, Allah excellently advises you with it. Indeed, Allah is All-Hearing, All-Seeing.” (Surah an-Nisa 4:58)

The path of Islamic superiors, from beginning to end, is built upon manners. Knowledge is not learned before manners are learned. Good manners are the source of feed (spiritual power that flows from heart to heart and helps one obey Allah.

Here is some importance of the good manner in Islam:

  1. Muslim communities high their good morals of justice
  2. Muslims should treat with great respect and manners
  3. Muslims should kindness and obedience to parents
  4. Muslims should show kindness to their neighbours
  5. Muslims should learn and teach Islamic knowledge
  6. Muslims should live kindness to orphans and poor
  7. Muslims should avoid every bad conversation
  8. Muslims should always respect elderly people
  9. Muslims should show modesty and humility
  10. Muslims should recite the Quran every day
  11. Muslims should establish a good relation
  12. Muslims should beware of bad behaviour
  13. Muslims should be humble vs arrogant
  14. Muslims should avoid every bad habit
  15. Muslims should ensure good morals
  16. Muslims should save a person’s life
  17. Muslims should prevent backbiting
  18. Muslims should always avoid lying
  19. Muslims should get a positive vibe
  20. Muslims should honour the guest
  21. Muslims should avoid talebearing
  22. Muslims should control anger
  23. Good manners increase faith
  24. Good manners follow Islamic law
  25. Good manners make close to Allah
  26. Good manners lead man to Paradise
  27. Good manners follow Islamic teaching
  28. Good morals cause strength to Muslims
  29. Good morals are considered the foundation
  30. Good manners surely indicate the goodness

Every society has its needs and demands to be able to move forward, and among many of those necessities, are showing gratitude towards seniors, and showing benevolence to the juniors. Elders are a great source of inspiration, as they have already seen the world closely, and one can learn from their experiences. Allah said:

Other Importance

Conducting good manners is more than just a way to level up our faith. It is a way to always stay faithful to Allah and Islam. Below are other benefits of a good manner in Islam.

  • Promote honesty
  • Increase faith
  • Part of mercy
  • Trigger generosity
  • Moment of reflection
  • Simple good deed

Having good manners when socializing isn’t just a plus factor when dealing with people in this temporary abode of this life, but even more so, it is part and parcel of pleasing God in His Grandiosity. Visiting the sick and abstaining from evils such as backbiting and slandering also includes good manners. Allah loves those who possess these great qualities.

Allah Almighty says in The Holy Quran:

  • “Those who are constant at their prayer.” (Quran 70:23)
  • “And those who keep a guard on their prayer.” (Quran 70:34)
  • “And indeed, you are of a great moral character.” (Quran, 68:4)
  • “Surely, you (Prophet Muhammad) are of great morality.” (Al-Qalam 68:4)
  • “Say not even a word to them in contempt and don’t repel them.” (Al Quran 17:23)
  • “Surely Allah and His angels bless the Prophet; O you who believe! Call for (Divine) blessings on him and salute him with a (becoming) salutation.” (Quran 33:56)
  • “(O Believers) Do not hold the Messenger’s calling (you) among you to be like your calling one to the other….” (Quran 24:63)
  • “And speak to him with gentle speech that perhaps he may be reminded or fear [Allah].” (Quran 20:44)

Good manners have lots of benefits in life. Despite having faith in the Oneness of Allah, and considering Muhammad (PBUH) as His last Prophet, we cannot call ourselves true Muslims till we embrace and apply the Islamic instructions in our lives through appropriate mannerism. It bridges differences, maintains a good relationship, and more. Conducting good manners is difficult because people do not change easily in one night.

لَّقَدْ كَانَ لَكُمْ فِي رَسُولِ اللَّهِ أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ لِّمَن كَانَ يَرْجُو اللَّهَ وَالْيَوْمَ الْآخِرَ وَذَكَرَ اللَّهَ كَثِيرًا

“Indeed in the Messenger of Allah (Muhammad PUBH) you have a good example to follow for him who hopes in (the Meeting with) Allah and the Last Day and remembers Allah much.” (Surah Al-Ahzab, 33:21)

Good manners consist of spreading words of peace and mending broken relationships between people. Good manners are about respecting your parents, elders and neighbours and showing love and compassion to the young. It also includes visiting the sick and abstaining from evils such as backbiting and slandering. We must learn to pass on good manners and the very best of manners to our family and friends. However, you can start it with a simple “thank you” or “please” to other people. Good manners are also a stepping stone closer to Allah.

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