Etiquette towards the Messenger of Allah
January 28 2021 10:55 PM

One of the joys that Allah grants His servant is to love His beloved Noble Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam (may Allah exalt his mention), and how can it be otherwise, when to love the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, is one of the conditions of faith?
Imam Al-Bukhari, may Allah have mercy upon him, related from Abu Hurairah, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “I swear by Him in Whose Hands my soul lies, none of you will truly believe until I am more beloved to him than his father and son.”
Imaam Muslim, may Allah have mercy upon him, related from Anas, may Allah be pleased with him, that he said: The Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “None of you will truly believe until I am more beloved to him than his family, wealth and all the people.”
In the same way that love of the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, is a reason for attaining the good of this world and the Hereafter, then loving him is also a reason for achieving the sweetness of Eeman (faith).
Al-Bukhari and Muslim both related from Anas, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Whoever possesses the following three qualities will taste the sweetness (delight) of Eeman: One to whom Allah and His Messenger, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, are dearer than anything else; whoever loves his brother solely for Allah’s sake; and whoever hates to convert to disbelief just as he hates to be thrown into the Fire.”
The meaning of “sweetness of Eeman”, as the scholars have stated is: “Deriving pleasure from obedience and enduring hardship in religion and preferring this over worldly things.” (Sharh An-Nawawee and Fat- Hul-Baree)
Loving the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, will also be a means of taking one to the place of felicity.
It has been related by Al-Bukhari and Muslim from ‘Abdullah Ibn Mas’ood, may Allah be pleased with him, that he said: [A man came to the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, and said: ‘O Messenger of Allah! What do you say of a man who loves a people and never joins them?’ The Messenger of Allah said: The person will be with those whom he loves (i.e. in the Hereafter).”]  (Al-Bukhari & Muslim)
We all claim that we love the Noble Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, and that he is more beloved to us than our fathers, sons and all the people. However, are we really truthful in this claim? Does our claim have any value in the Sight of Allah?
The scholars have mentioned signs and criterion by which the love of the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, can be judged i.e. whether it is in a person’s heart or not. Some of the most apparent signs are the following:
1) being eager to see and keep company with him, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam. Thus, the loss of these two wishes would be worse than the loss of anything in the world.
2) Having total willingness to sacrifice oneself and one’s wealth for him.
3) Following his orders and refraining from what he prohibited.
4) Making his Sunnah (Prophetic traditions) victorious and protecting the Shari’ah (Islamic law).
If one finds these signs in himself, then he should praise Allah, The Most Mighty and The Most Majestic, that he possesses in his heart the true love for the beloved, the Noble [Prophet], sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam. He should ask Allah for steadfastness upon this.
Whoever lacks some or all of these signs, should hold himself to account before he is held to account, on a Day which will turn the hair of children gray (i.e. the Day of Resurrection). Nothing will be hidden from Allah and he (the slave) will not consider or attempt to deceive Allah and the believers; because one who attempts to deceive Allah will only deceive himself as Allah says:
“They (think to) deceive Allah and those who believe, while they deceive not except themselves, and perceive (it) not.” [Qur’an, 2: 9]
‘Umar Ibn Al-Khattab, may Allah be pleased with him, said to Allah’s Messenger, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam: “O Messenger of Allah, you are more beloved to me than anything except my own self.” Allah’s Messenger, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, then told him, “No, by the One in Whose Hand is my soul, not until I am more beloved to you than your own soul.” ‘Umar then told him, “By Allah, now you are more beloved to me than my own soul (i.e. you will not truly believe).” Allah’s Messenger, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, then told him that now he had true and correct faith.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
Ibn Rajab may Allah have mercy upon him says about love of the Messenger, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam:
Love for the Messenger, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, is at two levels.
The first level is obligatory. This is the love that requires one to accept whatever the Messenger, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, brought from Allah and to receive it with love, pleasure, esteem and submission, without seeking guidance from any other source whatsoever. This is then followed by excellent following of him in whatever he conveyed from his Lord and to affirm whatever he has reported of obligations, to remain away from anything he has prohibited of forbidden acts, to give support for his religion and to strive against those who oppose him according to one’s ability. All of these are necessary components that one must possess and a person’s Faith is not complete without them.
The second level is superior [and not an absolutely necessary component of Faith]. This type of love requires following his example in an excellent way and fulfilling the following of his Sunnah (tradition) with respect to his behavior, manners, voluntary deeds, supererogatory actions, eating, drinking, dressing, excellent behaviour with his wives and other aspects of his perfect manners and pure behaviour. It also includes learning about the details of his life and practices. It also includes the heart trembling when mentioning him, exalting his mention often, out of what resides in the heart of love for him, esteem for him and respect for him. It also includes loving to listen to his words and preferring them over the words of others of the creation. And one of the greatest aspects of this love is to follow him in his abstinence of this world, his being sufficed with little of this world and his turning to and desiring of the everlasting Hereafter.
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Envy a disease of the heart
Strictly speaking, envy (hasad) is hatred and disliking the good condition of the envied one. This is of two types:
1) The blameworthy type of envy is unrestricted dislike of the blessings bestowed upon the envied. This is the type of jealousy that incurs blame, so when one hates something he is then hurt and grieved by the existence of what he hates, and this becomes a sickness in his heart such that he takes pleasure in the removal of the blessings from the envied even if this does not result in any benefit to him except the single benefit of having the pain that was in his soul removed.
But this pain is not removed except as a result of his continuously watching the envied so that the jealous person finds relief when the blessing is removed, but then it becomes more severe as is the case of the one who is sick, for it is possible that this blessing, or one similar to it, returns to the envied. This is why the second group said: ‘It is a desire to have the blessings removed,’ for indeed the one who dislikes the blessings bestowed upon other than him desires them to see removed.
2) That he dislikes the superiority of that person over him, and he desires to be like him or better, so this is jealousy and has been called ghubta, and the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, called it hasad in the hadith reported by both al-Bukhari and Muslim from the hadith of ibn Mas’ood and ibn `Umar, radiallahu ‘anhumaa, that he, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said, “There is no envy except in two cases: a person to whom Allah has granted wisdom, and he rules by this and teaches it to the people, and a person to whom Allah has granted wealth and property along with this the power to spend it in the cause of Truth.”
This being the wording of Ibn Mas’ood. The wording of Ibn ‘Umar is, “A person to whom Allah has given the Qur’an and he recites it night and day, and a person to whom Allah has granted wealth and property from which he gives in charity night and day.”
...So the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, forbade hasad, with the exception of two cases which are referred to as al-ghubta, meaning that a person loves the condition of someone else and dislikes that this person be superior in this way (without his wishing that it be removed from that person).
So if it is asked: ‘Then why is this (ghubta) called envy when he loves only that Allah bestow these blessings upon him?’ It is said, ‘The starting point of this love is his looking towards the favours Allah has bestowed upon someone else and his disliking that this person be favoured over him. So if this other person were not present then he would not have desired these blessings. So because the starting point of this love is this dislike that someone else be made superior to him, then this is called envy due to the love following the dislike. As for desiring that Allah bestows favours upon him without consideration of people’s material conditions then this is not envy at all.’
This is why the generality of mankind have been tried with this second type of envy that has also been called al-munaafasah (competition) because two people compete in a single desired matter, both of them trying to attain the same good. The reason for their trying to attain it is that one of them dislikes that the other be blessed with this matter over him just as any one of two competitors dislikes that the other beat him.
Competition is not considered blameworthy in general, rather it is considered to be praiseworthy when competing for righteousness. The Exalted said,
“Indeed the pious will be in delight. On thrones, looking on. You will recognise in their faces the brightness of delight. They will be given to drink pure sealed wine. The last thereof (that wine) will be the smell of musk, and for this let those compete who want to compete.” [Al-Mutaffifeen (83):22-26]
So one is commanded to compete for these delights and not compete for the delight of this fleeting world.
...The souls do not envy the one who is in severe hardship and this is why the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, did not mention it even though the mujaahid, fighting in the Way of Allah, is superior to the one who is spending wealth.... Similarly, the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, did not mention the one who prays, fasts and performs the pilgrimage, because there is no tangible benefit attained from the people for these actions by which the person can be exalted or disgraced, as can be attained in teaching and spending.
Fundamentally, envy occurs when someone else attains power and authority; otherwise the one who is performing these actions is not normally envied, even if this person be blessed with far more food, drink and wives than others, as opposed to these two blessings of power and authority, for they cause a great deal of envy.
...Allah praised the Ansaar with His saying, “And they have no jealously in their breasts for that which they have been given (the muhaajiroon), and give them preference over themselves even though they were in need of that.” [Al-Hashr (59):9]
As for the jealousy that is totally blameworthy then Allah has said with regards to the Jews, “Many of the People of the Book wish that if they could turn you away as disbelievers after you have believed, out of envy from their own selves even after the truth has become clear to them.” [Al-Baqarah (2):109]
‘They wish’ meaning that they hope to make you apostatise from your religion out of jealousy. So jealousy was the deciding factor behind their wish even after the Truth had been made clear to them. This because when they saw you attain what you attained of blessings – in fact they saw you attain that which they themselves had never attained – they became jealous of you.
Similarly this is mentioned in another verse, “Or do they envy men for what Allah has given them of His bounty? Then We have already given the family of Abraham the Book of Wisdom, and conferred upon them a great kingdom. Of them were (some) who believed in him (Muhammad) and of them were some who averted their faces from him and enough is Hell for burning (them)...” [An-Nisaa’ (4): 54-55]
“Say: I seek refuge with the Lord of the Daybreak. From the evil of what He has created. And from the evil of the darkening (night) as it comes with its darkness. And from the evil of the witchcrafts when they blow in the knots. And from the evil of the envier when he envies.” [Al-Falaq (113):1-5]
...So the one who is jealous, hating the favours bestowed by Allah upon someone else is an oppressor, going beyond bounds due to this. As for the one who dislikes that someone else be blessed and wishes to be blessed in the same way, then this is forbidden for him except in that which will bring him closer to Allah. So if he were to wish for something that has been given to someone else which would help bring him closer to Allah then there is no problem in this. However, his wishing for it in his heart, without looking to the condition of someone else is better and more excellent.
Then if this person were to act, dictated by this jealousy, he would be an oppressor going beyond bounds, deserving of punishment unless he repents... 
Jealousy is one of the sicknesses of the soul, and it is an illness that afflicts the generality of mankind and only a few are secure from it. This is why it is said, “The body is never free from jealousy, but debasement brings it out, and nobility hides it.” It was said to Al-Hasan Al-Basree, “Can a believer be envied?” He replied, “What has made you forget Yoosuf and his brothers, have you no father? But you should keep (this envy should it occur) blinded in your heart, for you cannot be harmed by that which you did not act upon in speech or action.”
So the one who finds that he harbours jealousy in his soul towards someone else, then it is upon him to treat it with patience and taqwaa of Allah, and dislike it being in his soul... As for the one who actually takes a stance against the envied, either with words or actions then he will be punished for this, and the one who fears Allah and is patient and does not become one of the oppressors – Allah will benefit him for his taqwaa.
...In the hadith there occurs, “There are three sins from which no one can be saved: jealousy, suspicion and omens. Shall I tell you of what will remove you from this: When you envy do not hate, when you are suspicious then do not actualise your suspicions, and when you see omens then ignore them.” Reported by Ibn Abi Ad-Dunya from the hadith of Abu Hurairah.
In the Sunan from the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, “You have been afflicted with the illness of the nations that came before you – jealousy and hatred. They are the shearers, I do not mean the shearers of the hair, rather they are the shearers of the religion.” [At-Tirmidhi, at-Tabaranee and al-Hakim who said it was saheeh].
So he called jealousy an illness just as he called miserliness an illness in his saying, “And what illness is worse than miserliness.” [Ahmad, Hakim and others, saheeh]
...In the first hadith jealousy was mentioned along with hatred. This is because the envier, first of all dislikes the bounty bestowed by Allah upon the one who is envied, and then begins hating this person. This is because the hatred of the thing being bestowed leads to hatred of the one upon whom it is bestowed, for when the blessings of Allah are bestowed upon an individual, he would love that they go away, and they would not go away except by the one who is envied going away, therefore he hates him and loves that he not be there.
Jealousy necessarily leads to desire and hatred just as Allah informed us of those that came before us that they differed, “After there came to them knowledge out of mutual hatred and desire.” [Aal ‘Imraan (3):19]
...“Do not envy one another, do note hate each other, do not oppose each other...” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
“By the One in Whose Hands is my soul, none of you believes until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
...Greed is a sickness as is miserliness, and jealousy is worse than miserliness, as occurs in the hadith, “Jealousy eats away at good deeds, just as fire eats away at firewood.” [Sunan Ibn Majah]
This is because the miser only stops himself from having good but the envier dislikes the favours of Allah bestowed upon His servants.
[Excerpted and adapted from Imam Ibn Taymiyyah’s Diseases of the Hearts and Their Cures]

Eye of the envier
1. Envy is one of the major sins which is bound to destroy good deeds as fast as the fire burns the wood and dry grass to ashes. “Jealousy eats away at good deeds, just as fire eats away at firewood.” [Sunan Ibn Majah] 
2. Envy was described as a sickness by the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam. 
3. Envy is hating that good happens to others. 
4. Envy is displeasure with Allah’s decree and His granting blessings upon others. 
5. “Faith and envy do not go together in the heart of a servant.” [Ibn Hibban, saheeh] 
6. “The people will be fine as long as they do not envy one another.” [At-Tabarani with trustworthy narrators] 
7. Envy is a characteristic the Jews displayed towards the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, causing them to inflict him harm. 
8. Envy leads to hatred. 
9. The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, described envy as a shearer of the religion. 
10. Muslims are commanded in Surah al-Falaq to seek refuge from the evil of the envier when he envies. 
11. Envy is worse than miserliness; this is because the miser only stops himself from having good but the envier dislikes the favours of Allah bestowed upon His servants. 
12. No one attains true belief until one loves for one’s brother what one loves for oneself. 
13. It is said that the people who have the greatest degree of restlessness are the envious. Such a person has no peace and is continuously grieved. 
14. The greatest harm from envy comes to the envier, who with one’s displeasure with Allah’s decree attains a great loss to oneself. 
Al-Mubarrad recited the following lines:
The eye of the envier always sees scandal, bringing out faults and hiding the good.
He meets you cheerfully, with a smiling face, while his heart conceals his true feelings.
The envier’s enmity comes without provocation, yet he accepts no excuses while he attacks.

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