Friday, February 24, 2006

The Qualities A Person Should Develop.

Some people think that if one succeeds in observing solat [prayer], sawm [fasting], zakat [payment of a certain portion of one’s wealth to the poor] and Hajj [pilgrimage to Makkah], and then that person is a perfect Muslim. This indeed is not the case. If observing rituals does not help us to be humble, virtuous and truly God-fearing, then we are not real Muslims.

The qualities a person should develop in him or herself are mentioned in the Qur’an and hadith repetitively.

Allah s.w.t says: Those who humble themselves in their prayers; who avoid vain talk; who are active in deeds of charity, who abstain from sex except with those joined to them in marriage or [the captives] whom their right hands possess, for [in their case] they are free from blame. However, those whose desires exceed those limits are transgressors. Those who faithfully observe their trusts and their covenants; who [strictly] guard their prayers: these will be the heirs who will inherit Paradise, to dwell therein.
[Al Mu’minun 23, verses 1 to 11]

Prophet Muhammad s.a.w said: None of you truly a believer until he loves for his brother as he loves for himself.
He also said: "By Allah! He does not believe. By Allah! He does not believe. By Allah! He does not believe."
He was asked: “Who, O Messenger of Allah?”
Then he said: "Whoever does not safeguard his neighbor from his harms."

We can summarize the teachings of Islam about the Muslim character concisely in the following:

Be truthful; do not be dishonest.

Be humble; do not be arrogant.

Be moderate; do not be excessive.

Be clean; do not be corrupt.

Be reserved; do not be garrulous.

Do not be boastful; be soft-spoken.

Do not be unmindful of others; be loving and solicitous to them.

Do not be harsh; be considerate and compassionate.

Do not be insulting and disrespectful to people; be polite and helpful.

Do not be selfish and miserly; be generous and charitable.

Do not swear, do not curse; be refined and gentle in speech.

Do not be bitter and resentful; be cheerful and magnanimous.

Do not be greedy; be content, be grateful for what one has.

Do not be irritable and morose; be cheerful and pleasant.

Do not be lustful; be chaste and pure.

Do not be absent-minded; be alert.

Do not be graceless; be dignified and decent.

Do not be hypocritical; be sincere and straightforward.

Do not be cynical or pessimistic; be optimistic and hopeful.

Do not be doubtful and wavering; be confident and deep in faith.

Do not be materialistic; be spiritually oriented.

Do not lose heart or be desperate; always have faith in Allah’s mercy.

Do not be negligent to your duties; be diligent and vigilant. Do not insult and disrespect your parents; be kind and helpful to them.

Do not be forgetful of the innumerable blessings of God; be thankful to Him and constantly pray to Him: All praise is to Allah, the Lord of the world.

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