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Neighbors in Islam

Written by: by Moustafa Kattih :: (View All Articles by: Moustafa Kattih)
In the name of Allah the most gracious, the most merciful

The topic of our speech is The Neighbors Rights in Islam

First: By the grace of the Almighty Allah we have moved to this new Masjid. With this new Masjid we have new neighbors. Our new neighbors received us with a warm welcome and extended a helping hand. They have kindly and respectably dealt with us a new community within their own community. Their action reflected their kind nature and their good morals.

Thus I must explain the neighbors rights in Islam; since Islam looks into the people's hearts and their action, not to their ethnical backgrounds or color. Allah Says (Verily the most honored of you in the sight of Allah he who is the most righteous of you). We should all know our duty towards our neighbors whether it is a neighbor at home or at work. Be an active picture of Islam as the prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) has described the Muslim. Our behavior should reflect the greatness of our religion.

On the other hand, wrong doing and badly treating others around you can only reflect a bad picture about our religion. Islam strongly rejects and condemn such action and the prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) ordered us not mistreat our neighbors.

Second: Islam is a belief and a full social and political system. Respecting and being kind to your neighbor is one of the great morals in Islam which shapes a Muslim. The prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) Said (I have been sent to complete the great morals). He also said (Good morals are of those deeds that take you heaven), and he also said (Good morals and being good to your neighbors leads into better life and prosperity for all). A neighbor has rights upon you even if he was a non believer. The prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) said (one neighbor has one right upon you, the non believer who has the right of being a neighbor. Another neighbor has two rights upon you, the Muslim who has the right of being a neighbor and the right of Islam, a third neighbor has three rights upon you, the Muslim relative who has the right of being a neighbor and a Muslim and relative). Since the prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) ordered us to be kind to a non believer neighbor; it is only logical to derive that a Christian or Jew neighbor would have at least the same right upon us. I hope that you pay a great attention to this matter especially those who say these are non-Muslims and of a different race. These individuals are ignoring Quran and Sunnah and do not mind mistreating our cheating their neighbors; and thus, their action shows their ignorance and bad morals.

Third: I ask all of you to be kind to your neighbor and not respect them. Do not park your car in your neighbor's parking lot or on his grass, do not throw your garbage in his yard, do not make fun of the way live or talk or dress. Be kind to your neighbor and respect him to be a true Muslim.

The Prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) said (Faith is about seventy sections, the highest of it is to believe that there is no God other than Allah and the lowest of it is to remove an obstacle or waste from the road). Based on that we can conclude that throwing waste on the road or on the neighbor's yard reflects a weakness in one's faith and a rejection to the orders of Allah and his messenger. The prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) said (Gabriel is still reminding me of caring for my neighbors until I thought he might ask me to leave an inheritance).

Dear brothers, I ask of you to have a close and kind relation with your neighbors. Visit your neighbors and bring them gifts in occasions. The prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) said (O' Abu thar, if you cook consider your neighbors) and he said (He who believes in Allah and the day after should be kind to his neighbor). The prophet also said (He who believes in Allah and the day after should extend a helping hand to his neighbor).

Fourth: Neighbor's rights are clearly defined in Islam. The prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) said describing the neighbor rights (If he needs to borrow something from you, you should provide him with it when you can. If he ask you for help you should help him. If he falls into sadness you should ease his pain, and if your neighbor dies you should attend his funeral).

It is important to remind you that the required Islamic conduct towards your neighbor is valid as long as it does not lead into what is forbidden in Islam. Example of that is joining your neighbor in eating pork, drinking liquor, using drugs or joining them in a forbidden place such as a bar or a club. Also, remember it is not responsibility as to what he does on his own; if he conducts an evil matter, it is not for you to attack him or even openly criticize his actions.

Fifth: Abu Haneefa had a neighbor who is habitually drunk. In the latest part of the nights, this neighbor starts his loud singing and screaming. Abu Haneefa was always patient with him and he always tried to lead the right path. One night, Abu Haneefa did not hear the loud noise from his neighbor. Abu Haneefa researched the matter and found out that his is neighbor is in jail; so, he bailed out of jail. Abu Haneefa's action lead the neighbor to stop drinking and repent to Allah.

The prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) received some meat at his home, he then asked (have given our Jew neighbor part of it). When the prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) died, his shield was pawned with that Jew neighbor.

Conclusion: Allah Almighty says (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 wayfarer (ye meet), and what your right hands possess)

So brothers, let your conduct with your neighbors be the best of conduct as your Islam and your Prophet (peace and blessing from Allah be upon him) has ordered you.

All thanks be to the Almighty Allah


By Moustafa kattih

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Those khutabs and speeches are a part of what have been said at masjed annour in chattanooga/Tn during friday prayers by imam Moustafa.
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