Thursday, February 23, 2006

A Muslim's Code of Conduct

The Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him ) is reported to have said:
Nine Things My Lord Has Commanded me:

1. Fear of God in private and in public;
  • Taqwa is the Jewel in the Crown of Faith

  • An acute awareness that God is with You

  • A sense of security and confidence

  • An effective check against the whispers of the Devil

  • True Taqwa is oblivious to the distinction between secret and open; public or private

  • “Be conscious of Allah wherever you are”
2. Justice, whether in anger or in calmness;
  • Justice is the distinction of a Believer

  • Justice in any situation, regardless of who the perpetrators and or victims are

  • Anger has the tendency to blind justice

  • Justice even in anger is trait not usually seen in common men

  • Justice is not only the domain of the authorities

  • Justice is demanded and can be achieved in even mundane and/or trivial maters
3. Moderation in both poverty and affluence;
  • Moderation is the way of the believer

  • Moderation in everything, not only in spending – even in prayer!

  • Moderation in spending is emphasised here as in Surah Furqan as a trait of the Servants of the Beneficient

  • Moderation in affluence is a challenge since the tendency is to spend without consideration.
4. That I should join hand with those who break away from me;
  • Social relationships are predicated upon a mutual acceptance between two people

  • When one party refuses this relationship and breaks away, the relationship is strained.

  • A Believer seeks to mend this relationship by striving to reach out

  • A difficult challenge, often ignored, but one that is rewarding.

  • Sincerity and consistency without aggression are key to mending relations

5. And give to those who deprive me;
  • The believer knows that it is only Allah who gives and withholds

  • Giving to one who has previously deprived you is built upon the above principle

  • Such giving cleans the soul of any inclination for revenge and has the potential to build trust

  • The preceding three principles are reflected in the verses: “Good and evil are not equal. Repel evil with that which is better…”

6. And forgive those who wrong me;
  • Forgiveness for wrongs committed against you takes a special kind of faith

  • One motivation is that as Allah forgives, so must His servants if they wish to receive His Forgiveness

  • The prayer of ‘Isa (peace be upon him) is a poignant example of this (if You punish them, they are Your servants; but if you forgive them then you are the Most Forgiving, Merciful)

7. And that my silence should be meditation;
  • The last three principles speak about the inner state

  • In a world full of noise and activity, silence is a welcome retreat

  • Even silence can be constructive – meditation on the beauty of Allah’s creation and the Power behind it all

8. And my words remembrance of God;
  • The hadith: “whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should either speak something good or be quiet…” is relevant.

  • Words that bring remembrance of God, invite to God, enjoin good, advise, encourage and motivate towards obedience are the best kind of speech

  • Foul words, words of ridicule and insult, of arrogance and haughtiness, of disobedience and idle talk are the worst kind of speech

9. And to take lesson from my observation. 
  • Observation is integral to analysis, experimentation and conclusions

  • Observation not limited to events and outwardly things

  • Observations include ethics, mannerisms, nature, methods etc.

  • Observation without heeding the lessons is like partaking of a meal without enjoyment

May God Almighty make this a code of conduct for all of us!


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