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Social Maladies Believers Are Commanded to Evade

By Dr. Ahmad Al-Khalidi

To found a strong sound society, the Qur’an guides Muslims to avoid social maladies such as believing wicked persons, laughing at others, calling others with their nick names, suspecting good people, backbiting and spying at others; as they certainly lead to the weakness of the societal bonds and corruption to its bases.

Such evil social manners are criticized in the Qur’anic speech dialogue in Surat Al-Hujurat, hence believers are commanded to evade such bad traits.

The Qur’anic speech dialogue is abundant with real ethical lessons which are very helpful for young Muslims to keep their good relationship with others. It is of extreme importance for parents at home and tutors at educational institutions to guide young Muslims to such kind of moral education which contributes a lot in building up a sound Islamic character.

Besides, they have to be aware of good conduct within their own Muslim community so as to lead a warm friendly relationship with the members of the group they live with.

Dr. Hazimi, (who is this gentleman?) states that Islamic ethics occupy a high position and a great rank, in the human civilization, which are derived from the Creator of Mankind and personified in the character of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in such a way that Allah praises him in the Qur’an in this way:

And you are on an exalted standard Of character. (Al-Qalam 68:4)

Besides, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) praises the Muslims who enjoy good manners.

On the authority of Jabir ibn `Abdullah that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“Of the most beloved among you to me and the nearest session of you to me in the Garden are those of the best of manners among you, and of the most detested among you to me and the farthest sitting from me are the chatters, the boasters and the mutafayhiqun (those who are arrogant when they speak)”. They (the Prophet’s Companions) said, “we know the chatters and boasters but who are the “mutafaihiqoon”? He said, “the arrogant.” (At-Tirmidhi)

Ideal world

The Islamic society is a world that has its own procedures in ascertaining words and actions and making sure of their source before judging on people; it is a world that has its own psychological etiquette in feelings towards one another; at the same time it has its own behavioral etiquette in dealing with one another and it is a world of clean feelings, ensured and protected honour in presence and absence. Nobody is judged by suspicion nor the safety or honour of people are exposed to harm.

Ascertaining the truth

Believers should not believe a wicked person when he tells them any news until they ascertain the truth lest they should do harm to other people who may be their relatives, friends, colleagues, neighbors or others.

To cite (Ali 1934:1404 what is this?), “All tittle-tattle or reports emanating from persons you do not know- are to be tested, and the truth ascertained, if believed and passed on, much harm may be done, of which you may have cause afterwards to repent heartily. Scandal or slander of all kinds is here condemned. That about women is specially denounced.”

O you who believe! If a wicked person comes to you with any news, ascertain the truth, lest you harm people unwittingly. (Al-Hujurat 49:6)

Laughing at Others is a Part of Bad Manners

Likewise, another verse in Surat Al-Hujurat prohibits believing men to ridicule one another that they may be better than them. It also prohibits believing women to ridicule one another that they may be better than them, nor defame each other nor call one another by offensive nicknames unless one is known with a nick name and he does not worry if he is called with such nickname.

O you who believe! Let not some men among you laugh at others: It may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): Nor let some women laugh at others: It may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): Nor defame nor be sarcastic to each other, nor call each other by (offensive) nicknames: Ill-seeming is a name connoting wickedness, (to be used of one) after he has believed: And those who do not desist are (indeed) doing wrong. (AL-Hujurat 49:11)

`Ali, (1934:1405) points out that “mutual ridicule cease to be fun when there is arrogance or selfishness or malice behind it.

We may laugh with people to share in the happiness of life; we must never laugh at people in contempt or ridicule. In many things they may be better than ourselves.”

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