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Islamic Morality and Ethics

Moral values in Islam aim to determine human activity in a Muslim society, to promote and control their behaviour to the benefit of the whole society and its individuals, and to bring for all individuals a good conclusion in the other life. Islam’s moral system is striking in that it not only defines morality but also guides the human race in how to achieve it, at both an individual as well as a collective level. It aims to integrate human attributes, behaviour, activity that aims to prepare followers of the Lord.  Allah says:

وَإِذَا سَأَلَكَ عِبَادِي عَنِّي فَإِنِّي قَرِيبٌ أُجِيبُ دَعْوَةَ الدَّاعِي إِذَا دَعَانِ

“And when My servants ask you concerning Me, then surely I am very near; I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he calls on Me…” (Surah Baqarah 2:186)

Islam has a unique morality of its own. Every religion lays great emphasis on the moral aspects of human conduct in its unique way. Morality in Islam addresses every aspect of a Muslim’s life from greetings to international relations. Good morals, character, ethics, and manners are fundamental to the religion of Islam and how we can achieve salvation in the life to come. A morally corrupt nation has no hope of making material progress. Allah says:

وَمَن يَقْنُتْ مِنكُنَّ لِلَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ وَتَعْمَلْ صَالِحًا نُّؤْتِهَا أَجْرَهَا مَرَّتَيْنِ وَأَعْتَدْنَا لَهَا رِزْقًا كَرِيمًا

“And whoever is obedient among you to Allah and His Messenger and does righteousness, We will give her her reward twice; and We have prepared for her a provision noble.” (Surah Al-Ahzab 33:31)

M orality in Islam is high so every Muslim must possess the quality of good moral character. It sets the way of life of a Muslim as well as defines his faith in Allah. As Allah loves someone with good character, it becomes our obligation to keep improving our Imaan and morals. Positive moral values are important because they allow you to have an overall feeling of peace and joy. A true Muslim is a humble person who submits his will to his Creator’s wishes.

Here is some importance of morality and its benefits in Islam:

  1. Morality is a key virtue to a strong relationship with God
  2. Morality is the fundamental characteristic of a Muslim
  3. Morality is the universal scope and in its applicability
  4. Morality is humble with God and with other people
  5. Morality is spending wealth in the Name of Allah
  6. Morality teaches controls of their passions
  7. Morality makes the most perfect Muslim
  8. Morality leading a Muslim to Paradise
  9. Morality is a basic principle in Islam
  10. Morality defining a Muslim’s level
  11. Morality is putting trust In Allah
  12. Morality is standing for Justice
  13. Morality reigns in selfish desires
  14. Morality is fulfilling your agreements
  15. Morality in Islam includes many aspects
  16. Morality teaches controls of their desires
  17. Morality is the only thing to help a Muslim
  18. Morality judged the actions are good or bad
  19. Morality addresses the aspect of a Muslim’s life
  20. Morality is worshipping Allah sincerely and obediently

Islamic morality and ethics having a good manner and character is a part of the faith itself. Your perfect morality defines perfect faith while lacking in morals means that your faith is not perfect. Islam valued the great of a character, as shown by the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) in his daily life in the past. Incorporating the moral value of honesty in your life make you trustworthy. You will have a clear conscience because you can respect yourself. .Allah says:

ثُمَّ جَعَلْنَاكَ عَلَىٰ شَرِيعَةٍ مِّنَ الْأَمْرِ فَاتَّبِعْهَا وَلَا تَتَّبِعْ أَهْوَاءَ الَّذِينَ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ

“Thus, We have ordained a law (shari’a) upon you in the matter, so follow it and do not follow the whims of those who know not.” (Surah Al-Jathiyah 45:18)

Parents arguably play the largest role in the character formation of the child and have the most impact on how the child turns out to be in life as he grows up.  A Muslim is expected to not only be virtuous but to also enjoin virtue. The emphasis on gentle treatment of parents, relatives, orphans, women, children, elderly, sick, and animals has been evident from various hadith traditions and Quranic verses. .Allah says:

وَاعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ وَلَا تُشْرِكُوا بِهِ شَيْئًا ۖ وَبِالْوَالِدَيْنِ إِحْسَانًا وَبِذِي الْقُرْبَىٰ

“Worship Allah and associate nothing with him, and be good to parents and relatives.” (Surah Al-Nisa 4:36)

Islam is a comprehensive way of life, and morality is one of the cornerstones of Islam. Muslims will be judged by their morals and deed at the ‘End of the Day so that nothing could help them but a good moral they have. Islam however, holds that moral positions are not relative, and instead, defines a universal standard by which actions may be deemed moral or immoral.

Allah Almighty says in The Holy Quran:

  • “Allah knows what your hearts contain.” (Quran, 3:119)
  • “Serve Allah, being sincere to Him in obedience.” (Quran 39:2)
  • “And indeed, you are of a great moral character.” (Quran, 68:4)
  • “And God loves those who are firm and steadfast.” (Quran 3:146)
  • “O you who believe! fear the wrath of God, and say only that which is true.” (Quran 33:70)
  • “Those who believe and whose hearts find serenity by the remembrance of God; now surely by God’s remembrance hearts find serenity and tranquillity.” (Quran 13:28)
  • “Remember your Lord much and glorify Him in the evening and the morning.” (Quran 3:41)
  • “Surely Allah enjoins the doing of justice and the doing of good (to others)…” (Quran 16:90)
  • “And (Allah gave to the Soul) its enlightenment as to its wrong and it’s right…” (Quran, 91:8)
  • “It is most hateful in the sight of Allah that you say things which you do not do.” (Quran 61:3)
  • “Indeed, the most honourable among you in the sight of God is the most pious.” (Quran 49:13)
  • “Ta Ha. We have not revealed the Quran to you that you may be unsuccessful.” (Quran 20:1-2)

Muslims look to the Glorious Quran and the Traditions of the Prophet as their moral guides. Muslims must have upright and strong moral and ethical values because Islam is not only about worshipping Allah but also about treating His creations well and living exemplary life in this world. But there are difficult moral dilemmas, especially in the modern world, when the answers are not as clear cut. Allah says:

الْمَالُ وَالْبَنُونَ زِينَةُ الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا وَالْبَاقِيَاتُ الصَّالِحَاتُ خَيْرٌ عِندَ رَبِّكَ ثَوَابًا وَخَيْرٌ أَمَلًا

“The wealth and children (are) adornment (of) the life (of) the world. But the enduring good deeds (are) better near your Lord (for) reward and better (for) hope.” (Surah Al-Kahf 18:46 )

Muslims must be honest in all their dealings. Whether it is a household matter or a business deal, truthfulness is important. Muslims are required to be kind to all the people around them. The moral code of Islam covers the smallest details of domestic life as well as the broad aspects of national and international behaviour. Allah says:

وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ لَنُدْخِلَنَّهُمْ فِي الصَّالِحِينَ

“And those who believe and do righteous deeds We will surely admit them among the righteous.” (Surah Al-`Ankabut 29:9 )

Moral values in Islam aim to determine human activity in a Muslim society and to promote and control their behaviour to the benefit of the whole society. It guides us in every stage of life. The love and continuous awareness of God and the Day of Judgment enable man to be moral in conduct and sincere in intentions, with devotion and dedication. Allah says:

الصَّابِرِينَ وَالصَّادِقِينَ وَالْقَانِتِينَ وَالْمُنفِقِينَ وَالْمُسْتَغْفِرِينَ بِالْأَسْحَارِ

“The patient and the truthful and the obedient and those who spend and those who seek forgiveness [in the] before dawn.” (Surah Ali Imran 3:17)

The moral laws enunciated in the Holy Quran are life-giving and life-enriching and, therefore, by living in this world by these laws man can realize one of God’s attributes. Our souls are only satisfied if we devote ourselves to Allah, not to our shallow desires. May Almighty Allah help us to follow the right path and footsteps of the Holy Prophet (SAW)! Ameen