12th Rabi' al-Awwal 1421:14th June '00 : Wed:12.15 pm (UK time)

From Abu Muntasir,

Assalaam 'alaikum wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuhu.

Innal hamdalillaah was-salaat was-salaam 'alaa rasoolillaah.

Sent by:

"Waste no time debating what a good Muslim should be. Be one!"

When Friends Hurt Each Other: P A R T O N E

By Muhammad Alshareef, LL.B Shari'ah


~~~ In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful ~~~


Imam Malik one day entered the Masjid after Asr. Towards the

front of Masjid An-Nabawee he drew closer and sat down.

Rasul Allah had commanded that anyone who enters the Masjid

should not sit until he first prays 2 rakas as a salutation

of the Masjid. Imam Malik was of the opinion however that

Rasul Allah's forbiddance of praying after Asr took precedence

and so he would teach his students to not pray the tahiyyatul

Masjid if they entered between the Asr and Maghrib time.

At that moment that Imam Malik sat down, a young boy had seen

him sit without first praying the 2 raka's of Tahiyyatul

Masjid. The young boy scorned him, "Get up and pray 2 rakas!"

Imam Malik dutifully stood up once again and began praying the

2 rakas. The students sat stunned: What was going on? Had Imam

Malik's opinion changed?

After he had completed the salah, the students swarmed around

and questioned his actions. Imam Malik said, "My opinion has

not changed, nor have I gone back on what I taught you earlier.

I merely feared that had I not prayed the 2 rakas as the young

boy commanded, Allah may include me in the Ayah.

"And when it is said to them, 'Bow (in prayer)', they do not

bow." - al mursalat 77/48.

Imam Ahmad held the opinion that eating camel meat nullifies

ones Wudu, an opinion that the majority of scholars differed

from. Some students asked him, "If you find an Imam eating

camel meat in front of you and - without first making Wudu

- then leads the Salah, would you pray behind him?" Imam

Ahmad replied, "Do you think I would not pray behind the

likes of Imam Malik and Sa'eed ibn Al-Musayyab?"

Allah created humans with differences. It is the law of

creation. Different tongues, different colors, different

cultures. All that on the outside. On the inside, humans

were created with many degrees of knowledge, intellect,

and comprehension of concepts. This is all a sign of Allah's

all encompassing power to do whatever He wills:

"And among His signs is the creation of the heavens and the

earth, and the variations in your languages and your colors:

verily in that are signs for those who know." [30:22]

Humans shall differ, that is not the issue. The issue is:

How as a Muslim should one confront these differences of

opinions and what should be our relationship with someone

of a different opinion.

Allah ta'ala commanded us to call and advise people in this

Deen of Al-Islam. Many Muslims set off on this mission

blindfolded, not realizing that the map was there in the

Qur'an also. In fact, in the very same verse where Allah

commanded us to call and advise people in this Deen, Allah

taught us how to do it. Read the following verse carefully:

"Invite (fi'l Amr - Allah is commanding) to the way of your

Lord with wisdom and good instruction and argue with them

in a way that is best! " - Surah An-Nahl 16/125.

There is no need to philosophize. No need to talk in the

flower gardens. It is right there, plain and simple for

anyone who would take heed.

There in that Ayah are the three ingredients to apply when

we disagree with someone. The same Allah that taught us to

debate the truth, taught us how to do it:

1 - With Hikmah (wisdom)

2 - With good instruction, and

3 - To argue in a way that is best.

What does it mean to have Hikmah when differing with


The grandsons of Rasul Allah once set one of the most

beautiful examples of Hikmah in advising others. Al-Hasan

and Al-Husayn - in their young age - once saw a senior man

performing Wudu incorrectly. Together they arranged a plan

to teach the man without insulting him, advising him in a

manner befitting of his age.

Together they went to the senior and announced, "My brother

and I have differed over who amongst us performs Wudu the

best. Would you mind being the judge to determine which one

of us indeed performs Wudu more correctly."

The man watched intently as the two grandsons of Rasul Allah

performed Wudu in an explicit manner. After they had completed,

he thanked them and said, "By Allah, I did not know how to

perform Wudu before this. You have both taught me how to do

it correctly."

We must understand that there are two dimensions to Hikmah.

Firstly, there is the Hikmah of knowledge - Hikmah Ilmiyyah.

And secondly, there is the Hikmah of Action - Hikmah Amaliyyah.

Some people may have Hikmah of knowledge. But we see that

when they try correcting others, advising them, they lack the

Hikmah of Action. This causes many a common folk to reject

the Hikmah of knowledge.

To illustrate this hikmah of knowledge without Hikmah of

action, a brother once completed the Salah in a local Masjid

and then proceeded to shake hands with the people on his

right and left. The brother to his immediate right slapped

his hand and snapped, "That is not part of the Sunnah!"

The man replied most correctly, "Oh, is disrespect and insult

part of the Sunnah?"

To show Hikmah when we differ requires the following:


One: If we differ, our intentions should be that we are

differing in the sincere hope of coming away with the truth.

Our intentions should be sincere to Allah.

We should not differ just to release some hate or envy in our

heart. We should not differ to embarrass someone like we may

have been embarrassed.

Rasul Allah said, "Whoever learns knowledge - knowledge from

that which should be sought for the sake of Allah - only to

receive a commodity of the material world, he shall not find

the fragrance of jannah on the day of resurrection." - An

authentic hadith narrated by Abu Dawood in Kitab Al-Ilm.

Kindness and Gentleness

Two: To have Hikmah when differing means we should rarely

depart from an atmosphere of kindness and gentleness, we

should seldom allow ourselves to become angry and raise

our voices.

Fir'own was one of the evilest people that lived. Musa was

one of the noblest. Look at how Allah told Musa to advise


"Go, both of you, to Fir'own. Indeed, he has transgressed.

And speak to him with gentle speech, perhaps he may remember

or fear (Allah)."

A man once entered upon the Khalifah and chastised him for

some policies he had taken. The Khalifah replied, "By Allah,

Fir'own was more eviler than me. And by Allah, Musa was more

pious than you. Yet, Allah commanded him.'And speak to him

with gentle speech, perhaps he may remember or fear (Allah).'"

Take Your Time and Clarify

Three: To have Hikmah when dealing with others is to be

patient and clarify things before snapping to conclusions.

Imam Ahmad narrates with his chain of narrators leading to

Ibn Abbas who said, "A man from Bani Saleem passed by a group

of the Prophet's companions. (At that time of war) The man

said 'as salamu alaykum' to them. The companions concluded

that he only said 'as salamu alaykum' to them as a deception

to save himself from being caught. They surrounded him and

Malham ibn Juthaamah killed him. From that event Allah

revealed the verse.

"O you who have believed, when you go forth (to fight) in

the cause of Allah, investigate, and do not say to one who

gives you (a greeting of peace), "You are not a believer,"

Aspiring for the goods of worldly life; for with Allah are

many acquisitions. You (yourselves) were like that before;

then Allah conferred His favor (i.e. guidance) upon you,

so investigate. Indeed, Allah is ever with what you do,

acquainted." - Surah AnNisa, 4/94. From Tafseer Ibn Katheer.

Speak Kindly

Fourthly, never trade in kind words for harshness,

especially when dealing with other Muslims.

Look at the power of a sincere and polite word:

Mus'ab ibn Umayr was the first of ambassador of Rasul Allah

in Madinah. Before Rasul Allah had arrived in Madinah, Mus'ab

taught ahl al-Madinah about Islam and they began to enter the


This enraged Sa'd ibn 'Ubaadah, one of the chieftains of

Madinah. He sheathed his sword and set off for the head of

Mus'ab ibn 'Umayr. When he confronted Mus'ab he threatened,

"Stop this nonsense you speak or you shall find yourself dead!"

Mus'ab replied in the way that should be a lesson for us all.

This man before him did not stop at rudeness and ignorance,

he wanted to slit his throat.

Mus'ab said, "Shall you not sit and listen for a few moments.

If you agree with what I say then take it, and if not, we

shall desist from this talk." Sa'd sat down.

Mus'ab spoke about Allah and His messenger until the face of

Sa'd ibn Ubaadah's face shone like a full moon and he said,

"What should a person do who wishes to enter into this Deen?"

After Mus'ab had told him he said, "There is a man, if he

accepts this Deen, there shall be no home in Madinah that

will not become Muslim. Sa'd ibn Mu'aadh."

When Sa'd ibn Mu'aadh heard what was happening, he was

infuriated. He left his home to go and kill this man called

Mus'ab ibn Umayr for the dissention he had caused. He

entered upon Mus'ab and announced, "You shall desist of

this religion you speak of or you shall find yourself dead!"

Mus'ab replied, "Shall you not sit and listen for a few

moments. If you agree with what I say then take it, and if

not, I shall desist from this talk." Sa'd sat.

Mus'ab spoke about Allah and His messenger until the face of

Sa'd ibn Mu'aadh's face shone like a full moon and he said,

"What should a person do who wishes to enter into this Deen?"

Look at what a kind word did. Sa'd ibn Mu'aadh went home to

his Madinan tribe that night and announced to them all,

"Everything of yours is Haram upon me until you all enter

into Islam."

That night, every home in Madinah went to bed with Laa ilaaha

illa Allah - all because of a kind word.

Part II: Who wins?

Mu'aawiyah ibn al-Hakam al-Salami. When he came to Madeenah

from the desert, he did not know that it was forbidden to

speak during the salaah. He relates: "Whilst I was praying

behind the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of

Allaah be upon him), a man sneezed, so I said 'Yarhamuk

Allaah (may Allaah have mercy on you).' The people glared

at me, so I said, 'May my mother lose me! What is wrong with

you that you are looking at me?' They began to slap their

thighs with their hands, and when I saw that they were

indicating that I should be quiet, I stopped talking (i.e.,

I nearly wanted to answer them back, but I controlled myself

and kept quiet).

When the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah

be upon him) had finished praying - may my father and mother

be sacrificed for him, I have never seen a better teacher

than him before or since - he did not scold me or hit me or

put me to shame. He just said, 'This prayer should contain

nothing of the speech of men; it is only tasbeeh and takbeer

and recitation of the Qur'aan.'"

(Saheeh Muslim, 'Abd al-Baaqi edn., no. 537).

Islam showed us how to differ with one another. Some people

think that we should never differ at all and all disagreements

should be avoided. Nay, this is an incorrect assumption, for

the Qur'an and Sunnah show clearly that when a mistake is made

it should be corrected. Indeed helping others do what is right

is a requirement of the Deen, sincere Naseeha.

We see when Rasul Allah turned away from AbdAllah ibn Umm

Maktoom, the blind man, Allah corrected him in the Qur'an.

"The Prophet frowned and turned away, Because there came to

him the blind man. But what could tell you that perchance he

might become pure (from sins)? Or that he might receive

admonition, and that the admonition might profit him?"

- surah Abasa, 1-4

When Haatib ibn Abi Balta'ah (may Allaah be pleased with

him) made the mistake of writing to the kuffaar of Quraysh

and informing them of the direction in which the Prophet

(peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was headed on

a military campaign against them, Allaah revealed the words:

"O you who believe! Take not My enemies and your enemies

as friends." - Surah Mumtahinah/1

And so on. Thus we learn that when a mistake happens it

should be corrected. However, the method of correction is

what needs our attention.

Whenever Muslims argue, it is as if each party carries a

banner of: 'I must win and you must lose!' Careful study

of the Sunnah however shows us that this is not always the

case with the way Rasul Allah acted. Consider the following


"I lose and you win!"

A Bedouin came to Rasul Allah and told him, "Give me from what

Allah gave you, not from the wealth of your mother nor from

the wealth of your father." The Sahaabah were furious at the

man and step forward to discipline him for what he said.

Rasul Allah commanded everyone to leave him.

Then by the hand, Rasul Allah took him home, opened his door

and said, "Take what you wish and leave what you wish." The

man did so and after he completed, Rasul Allah asked him,

"Have I honored you?" "Yes, by Allah," said the Bedouin.

"Ash hadu an laa ilaaha illa Allah, wa ashhadu anna Muhammadar

Rasul Allah."

When the Sahabah heard of how the man changed, Rasul Allah

taught them. "Verily the example of myself, you and this

Bedouin is that of a man who had his camel run away. The

townspeople tried capturing the camel for him by running

and shouting after the camel, only driving it further away.

The man would shout, 'Leave me and my camel, I know my camel

better.' Then he took some grass in his hand, ruffled it in

front of the camel, until it came willingly.

'By Allah, had I left you to this Bedouin, you would have hit

him, hurt him, he would have left without Islam and eventually

have entered hellfire."


"I win and you lose!"

A Muslim should not have an apologetic stance to everything

he is confronted with. There are times when the truth must

be said, when there is no room for flattery.

When the Makhzoomi women - a women from an affluent family

- stole, people approached Rasul Allah to have her punishment

canceled. Rasul Allah became very angry and stood on the

pulpit and announced, "By Allah, had Fatima the daughter of

Muhammad stole I would have cut her hand off."

No room for flattery, the truth must be stood up for. It is

here that the etiquette of disagreement that we talked earlier

about should shine.

"I win and you win!"

There doesn't always have to be a loser. We see in many

cases that Rasul Allah gave a way out for the people he

differed with.

When he sent the letter to Caesar, he said in it, "Become

Muslim and you shall be safe, Allah shall give you your

reward double!"

He did not say surrender or die! Nothing of the sort. Become

Muslim and you shall win, rather your victory shall be double.

I shall end with this shining example of how to act with

other Muslims from our role model, Abu Bakr:

Abu Bakr once disputed with another companion about a tree.

During the dispute Abu Bakr said something that he rather

would not have said. He did not curse, he did not attack

someone's honor, he did not poke a fault in anyone, all he

said was something that may have hurt the other companion's


Immediately, Abu Bakr - understanding the mistake - ordered

him, "Say it back to me!" The companion said, "I shall not

say it back." "Say it back to me," said Abu Bakr, "Or I

shall complain to the Messenger of Allah." The companion

refused to say it back and went on his way.

Abu Bakr went to Rasul Allah and related what had happened

and what he said. Rasul Allah called that companion and

asked him, "Did Abu Bakr say so and so to you?" He said,

"Yes." He said, "What did you reply." He said, "I did not

reply it back to him." Rasul Allah said, "Good, do not

reply it back to him (do not hurt Abu Bakr). Rather say,

'May Allah forgive you O Abu Bakr!'"

The Companion turned to Abu Bakr and said, "May Allah

forgive you O Abu Bakr! May Allah forgive you O Abu Bakr!"

Abu Bakr turned and cried as he walked away.

Let us leave today with a resolve to revive this air

Rasul Allah and his companions breathed, an air of mercy

and love and brotherhood.

And Allah knows best.


Wassalaam 'alaikum wa rahmatullaah.


"Take benefit of five before five: your youth before

your old age, your health before your sickness, your

wealth before your poverty, your free-time before your

preoccupation, and your life before your death."

[Muhammad sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam - al-Haakim,

al-Bayhaqee, Saheeh]


PO Box 24, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP3 8ED

Tel/Fax: 01473 251578