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Ethics of Islam

Ethics of Islam is taken from the book Berîka by Muhammad Hâdimi. Immorality and ways to get rid of it; 40 depravities and cures to them; usefulness of ethics; what is a soul; strengths of a soul; Personalities emanating from wisdom, courage, chastity and justice are extensively explained.

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derogatory purpose he becomes a disbeliever and his nikâh [1] gets dissolved automatically. Imâm-i Muhammad says that uttering a word which causes disbelief (kufr) will be treated in the same manner, i.e., he will become a disbeliever and his marriage will be dissolved automatically. Anyone who insults knowledge and scholars will become a disbeliever. May Allâhu ta’âlâ give all of us useful knowledge and protect us from useless knowledge. 13– EXCESSIVE HUMILITY (TAZALLUL) Excess in humility is called lowliness (tazallul), or meanness or holding one’s self down. Lowliness is prohibited (harâm). As is the case with other forbidden things, practising this vice upon a forced necessity (dharurat), also becomes permissible (jâiz). Following are some examples of forced necessities: to protect one’s religion, property, honor, or life, or to save one’s self from a tyrant. Looking for an easy solution is permissible when there is a forcing necessity or difficulty. Excessive humility is one of the vices. The following is a good example of excessive humility. When a scholar (’âlim) is visited by a shoe maker, the scholar gets up to greet him and tells him to sit in his place and while he is leaving, he walks along with him up to the door and places his shoes in front of him. Alternatively, if the scholar would get up to receive him and then sit back and show him where to sit and converse with him about his business and situation and ask him the purpose of his visit as well as answer his questions with a cheerful and smiling face and accept his invitation and help him to solve his difficulties, he would have shown humility. Rasûlullah ‘sall-Allâhu ’alaihi wa sal-lam’ states in a hadîth-i-sherîf: “A person who saves his Muslim brother from trouble will be rewarded (in the Hereafter) with as much thawâb as if he performed (supererogatory) hajj and ’umra.” Hadrat Hasan ‘radiy-Allâhu ta’âlâ ’anh’ asked Thâbit Benânî ‘rahimahullâhu ta’âlâ’ to do something for him. He said he was busy in the mosque with (retreat called) i’tikâf and that he would do it some other time. Hadrat Hasan ‘radiy-Allâhu ta’âlâ ’anh’ said: ‘Don’t you know that leaving your place for the purpose of attending to one of his Muslim brother’s needs is more meritorious than a nâfila (supererogatory) hajj or ’umra?” This [1] Marriage contract as prescribed by Islam. – 92 –

hadîth-i-sherîf incidentally serves as a basis for the conclusion that it is utterly rewarding (thawâb) for holders of position to help needy people and for teachers to support their pupils by using their authority and property. Anyone who begs while having means [nafaqa] to support himself for one day would be committing excessive humility and thus would be committing harâm. If a person having one day’s means (nafaqa) collects donations for others who do not possess one day’s means or for those who owe money to others, he would not be committing excessive humility. Giving a small gift while expecting a larger gift in return is excessive humility. Verses in the Qur’ân prohibit this type of gift giving. It is a very good deed to return a better gift in response to a gift received but it is not permissible to give a gift in expectation of receiving a better gift in return. Going to a reception without being invited would also be excessive humility. Rasûlullah ‘sall-Allâhu ’alaihi wa sal-lam’ states in a hadîth-isherîf: “Not attending to an invitation is a sin. Going to a reception without being invited to it is a theft.” Attending to an invitation of a marriage ceremony is necessary (wâjib) if there are no prohibited (harâm) things or affairs taking place at the ceremony. Attending all other types of invitations is sunnat. It is not permissible to accept invitations which are done for boasting or ostentation or hypocrisy. Establishing friendships with government officials, rich people and judges with the hope of receiving worldly benefits from them is excessive humility. The exception in the case of forced necessity (dharûrat) was already discussed above. Greeting by bowing down or by prostrating upon meeting one of these people is excessive humility and is a grave sin. Bowing down for the purpose of worshiping would cause disbelief. It would mean to imitate a Jewish way of salutation. [A poor person means a needy one. In Islam, a person who has enough money to purchase his basic necessities of life but does not have enough money to purchase a sheep for slaughtering, is poor. The state of poverty Rasûlullah ‘sall-Allâhu ’alaihi wa sallam’ asked from Allâhu ta’âlâ and commended possession of, is different from material poverty; it means ‘consciousness of the fact that you always need Allâhu ta’âlâ in everything you do’. Abdullah ad-Dahlawî ‘rahimahullâhu ta’âlâ’ in his book Durr-ulma’ârif, says, “In Sufism, poor (faqîr) means one who has no desire, or, in other words, one who has no desire other than to please Allâhu ta’âlâ.” A person who meets this definition will embrace patience and contentment when there is no means – 93 –

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