In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.
Islam is a religion that encompasses all aspects of life and secures guidance and light for all humanity. Islam asks Muslims to be good with all. A Muslim should be good with his Lord, Allah, with his parents, with his neighbors, with his relatives, with all people, and with all creatures.
In elaborating this point, Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqi, former President of the Islamic Society of North America, states:
Allah says in the Qur’an:
Serve Allah, and join not any partners with Him; and do good to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, those in need, neighbors who are near neighbors who are strangers, the companion by your side, the way-farer (you meet) and those under your authority; indeed Allah loves not the arrogant, the vainglorious) (An-Nisa’ 4: 36).
So fear Allah, and keep straight the relations between yourselves: obey Allah and His Messenger, if you do believe. (Al-Anfal 8: 1).
Good relations are as much part of Islam as are the Five Pillars: the declaration of faith, five daily Prayers, zakat, fasting during Ramadan, and Hajj for those who can afford it. Actually, none of the five main duties of Islam can be properly done without good relations. A Muslim is a person who tries to have good relations with everyone as much as possible. A Muslim is a person who must do his or her best to avoid bad relations with any person whosoever he or she may be.
Islam teaches good relations with Allah, with parents, with spouses, with other relatives, with neighbors, with coworkers, with employees and employers, with travelers, with the poor and needy, with Muslims and non-Muslims, with all people, even with enemies. Yes, even with enemies, because Islam teaches that one should never give up hope. Those who are enemies today may become friends tomorrow. A Muslim should try to turn into friends those who are his enemies or the enemies of Islam, not the other way round. Allah says in the Qur’an: (It may be that Allah will grant love (and friendship) between you and those whom you (now) hold as enemies. For Allah has power (over all things); and Allah is Oft Forgiving, Most Merciful) (Al-Mumtahinah 60: 7).
Among the merits and virtue of good relations are the following:
1- Good relations increase piety (taqwa). The pious person is not only one who prays and fasts, but also he or she is a person who deals nicely with others and keeps his or her relations very good.
2- Good relations establish trust and confidence among people, who then gain self-confidence.
3- Good relations are based on ease, forgiveness, overlooking the mistakes of others, kindness, courtesy, happy and smiling attitude, truth, trustworthiness, and many other good characteristics.
4- Good relations make a person or group successful and prosperous.
5- Good relations make a family loving, caring and happy.
6- Good relations bring unity and strength among Muslims.
7- Good relations remove hate and mistrust from the minds of non-Muslims.
8- Good relations take away many difficulties, pain, mental and physical suffering.
9- Good relations bring the blessings of Allah in this life.
10- Good relations please Allah and bring the reward of eternal happiness and bliss in the Hereafter.
We cannot over emphasize good relations. They are always needed, and we should remind ourselves to make our relations good with everyone. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) always had good relations with people. He never mistreated any person. Even when his worst enemies came to him or he had power over them, he forgave them and treated them with kindness. There is no leader in history who forgave his enemies as much as the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) did. He had a beautiful way to win the hearts of his enemies. Sometimes people came to him hating and disliking Islam and then went back as Muslims.
He used to remind his people always to have good relations with others. There are hundreds of hadiths on this subject. He used to remind spouses that they must treat each other with love and kindness. He used to remind children about parents and parents about their children. All family members must have good relations with one another. Ibn `Abbas reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “The best of you are those who are best to their families and I am the best of you to my family” (Reported by Ibn Majah).
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) used to remind people that they must be good to their neighbors. He even used the world ikram al-jar, which means, “honoring the neighbor.” Abu Hurayrah reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Whosoever believes in Allah and the Last Day, let him speak good words or keep silent. Whosoever believes in Allah and the Last Day, let him honor his neighbor; and whosoever believes in Allah and the Last Day, let him honor his guest” (Reported by Muslim).
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) used to urge Muslims to care for each other and never harm each other. `Abdullah ibn `Umar reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “A Muslim is a brother of another Muslim. He should not do wrong to him, not abandon him. Whosoever will be taking care of the need of a Muslim, Allah will take care of his needs; and whosoever will remove the difficulty of a Muslim, Allah will remove his difficulties on the Day of Judgment. Whosoever will protect a Muslim, Allah will protect him on the Day of Judgment” (Reported by Al-Bukhari).
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) used to remind people to be good to their employees and those who work for them. `Abdullah ibn `Umar reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Give to the workers their wages before their sweat dries (meaning as soon as their work is finished)” (Reported by Ibn Majah).