A group of three men came to the houses of the wives of the Prophet (ﷺ) asking how the Prophet (ﷺ) worshipped (Allah), and when they were informed about that, they considered their worship insufficient and said, “Where are we from the Prophet (ﷺ) as his past and future sins have been forgiven.” Then one of them said, “I will offer the prayer throughout the night forever.” The other said, “I will fast throughout the year and will not break my fast.” The third said, “I will keep away from the women and will not marry forever.” Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) came to them and said, “Are you the same people who said so-and-so? By Allah, I am more submissive to Allah and more afraid of Him than you; yet I fast and break my fast, I do sleep and I also marry women. So he who does not follow my tradition in religion, is not from me (not one of my followers).
Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) from the Prophet (ﷺ), who said: A prayer performed by someone who has not recited the Essence of the Quran (1) during it is deficient (and he repeated the word three times), incomplete. Someone said to Abu Hurayrah: [Even though] we are behind the imam? (2) He said: Recite it to yourself, for I have heard the Prophet (may the blessings and peace of Allah be up on him) say: Allah (mighty and sublime be He), had said: I have divided prayer between Myself and My servant into two halves, and My servant shall have what he has asked for. When the servant says: Al-hamdu lillahi rabbi l-alamin (3), Allah (mighty and sublime be He) says: My servant has praised Me. And when he says: Ar-rahmani r-rahim (4), Allah (mighty and sublime be He) says: My servant has extolled Me, and when he says: Maliki yawmi d-din (5), Allah says: My servant has glorified Me – and on one occasion He said: My servant has submitted to My power. And when he says: Iyyaka na budu wa iyyaka nasta in (6), He says: This is between Me and My servant, and My servant shall have what he has asked for. And when he says: Ihdina s-sirata l- mustaqim, siratal ladhina an amta alayhim ghayril-maghdubi alayhim wa la d-dallin (7), He says: This is for My servant, and My servant shall have what he has asked for. (1) Surat al-Fatihah, the first surah (chapter) of the Qur’an. (2) i.e. standing behind the imam (leader) listening to him reciting al-Fatihah. (3) “Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds.” (4) “The Merciful, the Compassionate”. (5) “Master of the Day of Judgement”. (6) “It is You we worship and it is You we ask for help”. (7) “Guide us to the straight path, the path of those upon whom You have bestowed favors, not of those against whom You are angry, nor of those who are astray”. It was related by Muslim (also by Malik, at-Tirmidhi, Abu-Dawud, an-Nasa’i and Ibn Majah).
The Prophet (s.a.w.) said: “The blessed names are: ‘Abdullah, ‘Abd al-Rahman and similar names that denote the servitude to Allah.”
The Prophet (s.a.w.) said: “Indeed, the best of names are: ‘Abdullah, ‘Abd al-Rahman, Harithah and Hammam.”
The Prophet (s.a.w.) said: “If you name the child Muhammad, honour him, make room for him in gatherings and do not frown at him.”
Al-Kafi, narrating from al-Sakuni who said: “I went to Imam al-Sadiq (a.s.) while I was sad and upset, and he said to me: “O’ Sakuni, why are you sad?”
I said: “A daughter has been born to me.”
He said: “O’ Sakuni, her weight is on the earth and her sustenance is from Allah. She lives outside the span of your lifetime, and she eats other than your sustenance.”
By Allah, he relieved me, and then he said: “What did you name her?”
I said: “Fatimah.”
He said: “Excellent!” Then he put his hand on his forehead and said: “The Messenger of Allah said: “The rights of the child on the father is that if the child is a male, the father should honour his mother, choose a good name for him, teach him the Book of Allah, purify him and teach him swimming. And if the child is a female, he should honour her mother, choose a good name for her, teach her [from] the Chapter of the Light, not teach her [from] the Chapter of Joseph, not to place her in an upstairs room, and to hasten in sending her to the house of her husband [for marriage].”
‘Be careful! Since you have named her Fatimah, you should not insult her, nor curse her, nor beat her.”
The Prophet (s.a.w.) said: “He who is given four boys and does not name one of them Muhammad, has indeed been disloyal to me.”
The Prophet (s.a.w.) said: “Name [your children] with the names of prophets.”
The Prophet (s.a.w.) said: “There is no family wherein there is the name of a Divine Prophet save that Allah sends an angel to them to sanctify them from the morning prayer until evening.”
Imam al-Baqir (a.s.) said: “The best name is the one which indicates the servitude [of Allah], and the best of them are the names of prophets.”
Imam al-Sadiq (a.s.) said: “There is no child that is born to us and not named Muhammad, and when seven days have passed, we keep the name if we want or we change it.”
Imam al-Sadiq (a.s.) said: “Someone came to the Prophet (s.a.w.) and said: “O Messenger of Allah! A child has been born to me, so what do I name him?” He said: “Name him by the dearest of names to me: Hamzah.”
Al-Kafi, narrating from ‘Abd al-Rahman ibn Muhammad ‘Azrami who said: “Mu’awiyah appointed Marwan ibn al-Hakam as the governor of Medina and ordered him to assign a salary for the young ones of Quraysh, and he did.”
Imam Zayn al-’Abidin [al-Sajjad] said: “I went to him and he asked: “What is your name?” I answered: “‘Ali ibn al-Husayn.” He asked: “What is your brother’s name?” I answered: “‘Ali.”
He said: ‘‘‘Ali and ‘Ali! What was your father after by naming all his sons ‘Ali?”
Then he paid my salary and I returned to my father [Imam Husayn] and told him what happened. He said: “Woe to the son of the blue-eyed woman and [animal] skin tanner. If I were given one hundred sons, I would name them nothing but ‘Ali.”
Tafsir al-’Ayyashi, narrating from Rib’i ibn ‘Abdullah who said: “Abu ‘Abdullah [al-Sadiq] (a.s.) was asked: “May I be your ransom! We name [our offspring] by your names and the names of your fathers, does this benefit us?”
He said: “By Allah, yes it does, and is religion anything but love? Allah has said: ‘… If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive your sins…”
Al-Kafi, narrating from Ibn Mayyah from Fulan ibn Hamid who said that he asked and sought advice from Abu ‘Abdullah [al-Sadiq] (a.s.) about the name of his son. The Imam said: “Name him by a name that indicates servitude.”
He said: “What are those names?”
He (a.s.) said: “[Names] like ‘Abd al-Rahman.”
Imam al-Kazim (a.s.) said: “Poverty will not enter the house that has someone from the men with the name of Muhammad, Ahmad, ‘Ali, Hasan, Husayn, Ja’far, Talib, or ‘Abdullah, or from among the women with the name Fatimah.”
Imam Hasan al-’Askari (a.s.) said to Ja’far ibn Sharif al-Jurjani: “May Allah give gratitude to Abu Ishaq Ibrahim ibn Isma’il for his service to our followers, and may He forgive his sins and bless him with a good son who believes in the truth. Tell him that al-Hasan ibn ‘Ali says: “Name your son Ahmad.”
Kashf al-Ghummah, narrating from Ja’far ibn Muhammad al-Qalanisi, who said: “My brother Muhammad wrote to Abu Muhammad [al-’Askari] (a.s.) while his wife was pregnant and close to delivering and had asked him (a.s.) to pray to Allah to relieve her [from pain] and to bless him with a son and to choose a name for the newborn. The Imam wrote back in answer to him, praying to Allah for his well being and said: “May Allah bestow upon you a healthy son, and Muhammad and ‘Abd al-Rahman are good names.”
Then his wife gave birth to twins and he named one of them Muhammad and the other ‘Abd al-Rahman.”
On the authority of Zayd ibn Khalid al-Juhaniyy (may Allah be pleased with him), who said: The Messenger of Allah (may the blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) led the morning prayer for us at al-Hudaybiyah following rainfall during the night. When the Prophet (may the blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) finished, he faced the people and said to them: Do you know what your Lord has said? They said: Allah and his Messenger know best. He said: This morning one of my servants became a believer in Me and one a disbeliever. As for him who said: We have been given rain by virtue of Allah and His mercy, that one is a believer in Me, a disbeliever in the stars (2); and as for him who said: We have been given rain by such-and-such a star, that one is a disbeliever in Me, a believer in the stars. (2) The pre-Islamic Arabs believed that rain was brought about by the movement of stars.
This Hadith draws attention to the fact that whatever be the direct cause of such natural phenomena as rain, it is Allah the Almighty who is the Disposer of all things. It was related by al-Bukhari (also by Malik and an-Nasa’i).
Narrated: Abu Huraira that a man said to the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam: “Advise me! “The Prophet said, “Do not become angry and furious.” The man asked (the same) again and again, and the Prophet said in each case, “Do not become angry and furious.” [Al-Bukhari; Vol. 8 No. 137]
Background This hadith is also related by other scholars of hadith. In another narration, it is related as:
A man came to the Messenger of Allah, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, and said, “Messenger of Allah, teach me some words which I can live by. Do not make them too much for me, lest I forget.” The Messenger of Allah, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, said, “Do not be angry.” [Abu Daud]
Some scholars say that the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, knew that the man who asked him used to get angry often and that is why the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, gave him that particular advice. This view may lead to narrowing down and limiting the benefit of the hadith, whereas it is very comprehensive, far-reaching and applicable to all Muslims because everyone is subject to anger.
There are other Qur’anic verses and hadith that emphasize the need to avoid getting angry. Allah mentions the qualities of the muttaqin:
“Those who spend (in Allah’s cause) in prosperity and in adversity, who repress their anger, and who pardon men, verily, Allah loves the al-Muhsinun (the gooddoers).” [Surah Al-Imran (3) : Ayah 133-134]
In another hadith, Abu Hurairah related that the Messenger of Allah, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, said:
“A strong person is not the person who throws his adversaries to the ground. A strong person is the person who contains himself when he is angry.” [Al-Bukhari; Book 47, No. 47.3.12]
And from the du’a (supplications) of the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam:
“I ask you O Allah, for truthful speech during times of pleasure and anger” [Nasaai and Ahmad]
Lessons There are four views, of which two of them are from the earlier scholars and the other two are from the contemporary scholars, about the interpretation of the Prophet’s, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, statement “Do not get angry”:
1. A person should learn how to change his character and adapt the characteristics of generosity, kindness, calmness, modesty, patience and forgiving. If a person adapts these qualities, then he may be able to restrain himself when he is about to get angry. 2. One should not act based on anger or while being angry. 3. When a person is about to get angry, he should control himself, be patient and not get angry. This is a contemporary view from Sheikh Al-Bitar. 4. Ustaz Jamaluddin Zarabozo says that the text can be interpreted in the following way: a Muslim must think before acting or speaking. As soon as the feeling of anger appears to oneself, then there is a need to think of why the anger appears and whether it is necessary to be angry. While asking these questions, the person must remember Allah and the Hereafter (Akhirah). This will cause the person to calm down and not get angry.
All these interpretations can be applied as different strategies in handling anger in different situations.
If a person gets angry, then it is necessary that the person performs a muhasabah, which is to account oneself of the mistakes committed, what leads to them and how to overcome them in the future. This is an important training for us to improve ourselves.
In various hadiths, the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, teaches us how to control our anger. For example:
The Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, said, “I know a word, the saying of which will cause him to relax, if he does say it. If he says: ‘I seek Refuge with Allah from Satan’ then all his anger will go away.” [Al-Bukhari; Vol. 4, No. 502]
The Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, said: “I know a phrase which, if he repeated, he could get rid of this angry feeling.” They asked: “What is it, Apostle of Allah?” He replied: “He should say: ‘I seek refuge in Allah from the accursed devil.'” [Abu Daud; Book 41, No. 4762]
Therefore one of the keys to controlling ourselves during anger is to seek refuge in Allah from Satan because Satan influence us through the ‘was-was’ that influence our perception. Likewise, Satan promotes evil to people by influencing their perception.
Influencing human perception as a satanic way to promote evil and create disputes among believers has been mentioned in many verses in the Qur’an, for example:
“And say to My servants (that) they should (only) speak that which is the best; (Because) Shaitan verily sows dissensions among them. Surely, Shaitan is an open enemy to man.” [Surah Al-Isra’ (17) : Ayah 53]
Indeed, if somebody uses a vague word in his speech, then Shaitan ‘whispers’ a wrong interpretation or understanding to the listeners of the speech that may affect the relationship amongst them. This is how relationships in the family, brothers, sisters and friends are severed.
In other hadiths, the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, teaches us how to deal with anger:
“Anger comes from the devil, the devil was created of fire, and fire is extinguished only with water; so when one of you becomes angry, he should perform ablution.” [Abu Daud; Book 41, No. 4766]
Abu Dharr narrated: The Apostle of Allah, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, said to us: “When one of you becomes angry while standing, he should sit down. If the anger leaves him, well and good; otherwise he should lie down.” [Abu Daud; Book 41, No. 4764]
In another hadith, the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, said:
“If one of you becomes angry then he should be silent.”
This is an important advice because during anger, most of our actions and speech may not be correct.
Narrated ‘Abdur Rahman bin Abi Bakra: Abu Bakr wrote to his son who was in Sijistan: Do not judge between two persons when you are angry, for I heard the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam, saying: “A judge should not judge between two persons while he is in an angry mood.” [Al-Bukhari; Vol. 9, No. 272]
This hadith is related to the previous hadith (hadith 15) – it sets out to avoid the judge from making unjust judgement.
However, there are praiseworthy anger as known from the examples of the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam. He never got angry except when the commandments of Allah are violated. However, if we want to get angry for the sake of Allah, then we need to be careful that we:
a. are really not getting angry for ourselves or for our own interests. b. need to do it in the right way, like not committing wrong actions or saying vulgar words while getting angry. c. can achieve the benefit as intended by the shari’ah. If the action leads to more harm than benefit, then it should be avoided based on the principle of weighing between the benefits and harms.
For example, when giving advice, say it in a good way, using good words, and be careful not to get into a quarrel.
It is well known today that anger causes many health problems especially if they are not controlled. There are wisdoms behind shari’ah injunctions and here we find that to control our anger may be beneficial to our health.
Conclusion Socially, this hadith promotes better relationship among people. We need to restrain anger and be patient. We may dislike something in this life but it may have benefits that we do not know. Our patience towards others who have been harsh on us may later lead them to think and change themselves to be better. Muslims need to set models for others to learn from.
Abu Hurairah (RAA) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said:“If anyone relieves a Muslim believer from one of the hardships of this worldly life, Allah will relieve him of one of the hardships of the Day of Resurrection. If anyone makes it easy for the one who is indebted to him (while finding it difficult to repay), Allah will make it easy for him in this worldly life and in the Hereafter, and if anyone conceals the faults of a Muslim, Allah will conceal his faults in this world and in the Hereafter. Allah helps His slave as long as he helps his brother.” Related by Muslim.
Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “He who believes in Allah and the Last Day must either speak good or remain silent.”
Abu Musa Al-Ash’ari (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:I asked the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ): “Who is the most excellent among the Muslims?” He said, “One from whose tongue and hands the other Muslims are secure.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
Sahl bin Sa’d (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “Whosoever gives me a guarantee to safeguard what is between his jaws and what is between his legs, I shall guarantee him Jannah.”
Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:I heard the Prophet (ﷺ) saying, “A person utters a word thoughtlessly (i.e., without thinking about its being good or not) and, as a result of this, he will fall down into the fire of Hell deeper than the distance between the east and the west.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “A man utters a word pleasing to Allah without considering it of any significance for which Allah exalts his ranks (in Jannah); another one speaks a word displeasing to Allah without considering it of any importance, and for this reason he will sink down into Hell.”
Abu ‘Abdur-Rahman Bilal bin Al-Harith Al-Muzani (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “A man speaks a good word without knowing its worth, Allah records for him His Good Pleasure till the day he will meet Him; and a man utters an evil word without realizing its importance, Allah records for him His displeasure till the day he will meet Him.”
[Imam Malik and At-Tirmidhi]
Sufyan bin ‘Abdullah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:I asked: “O Messenger of Allah! Tell me, of something to which I may remain steadfast.” He (ﷺ) said, “Say: My Rubb is Allah and then remain steadfast.” Then I said: “O Messenger of Allah! What do you fear most about me?” He took hold of his own tongue and said: “This.”
Ibn ‘Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) reported:The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “Do not indulge in excessive talk except when remembering Allah. Excessive talking without the Remembrance of Allah hardens the heart; and those who are the farthest from Allah are those whose hearts are hard.”
Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “He whom Allah saves from the evil of that which is between his jaws and the evil of that which is between his legs will enter Jannah.”
‘Uqbah bin ‘Amir (May Allah be pleased with him) said:I asked the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), “How can salvation be achieved?” He replied, “Control your tongue, keep to your house, and weep over your sins.”
Abu Sa’id Al-Khudri (May Allah be pleased with him) said:The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “When the son of Adam gets up in the morning, all the limbs humble themselves before the tongue and say: ‘Fear Allah for our sake because we are with you: (i.e., we will be rewarded or punished as a result of what you do) if you are straight, we will be straight; and if you are crooked, we will become crooked.”‘
Umar Ibn Al-Khattab relates that he heard the Messenger of Allah, sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, say, “Verily actions are by intentions, and for every person is what he intended. So the one whose hijrah was to Allah and His Messenger, then his hijrah was to Allah and His Messenger. And the one whose hijrah was for the world to gain from it, or a woman to marry her, then his hijrah was to what he made hijrah for.” [Agreed upon]
This hadith is singularly narrated by Yahya ibn Sa’id al-Ansari from Muhammad ibn Ibrahim at-Taymi from Alqama ibn Abi Waqqas from ‘Umar Ibn Al-Khattab and this hadith has no other authentic route as stated by Ali ibn Al-Madini and others.
Al-Khattabi said, “I do not know of a difference concerning this amongst the Ahlul-Hadith.” This despite the fact that it has been reported from the hadith of Abu Sa’id and others – and it is said that it is reported via many routes – but none of them are authentic according to the hadith masters.
Then from Al-Ansari a huge group of people report this hadith. It is said that the number is more than two hundred, and it is also said that the number is more than seven hundred. From the most notable of these are Imam Malik, Ath-Thawri, Al-Awza’i, Ibn Al-Mubarak, Layth ibn Sa’ad, Hammad ibn Zayd, Shu’bah, Ibn Uyaynah and others. The scholars have agreed to its authenticity and have unanimously accepted it.
A more comprehensive example of haya can be found in the following hadith:
Abdullah ibn Mas’ud relates that one day the Prophet said, “Be shy of Allah (God) Most High as much as is His due. The companions present said, ‘All praise to Allah, we are shy of Him.’ The Prophet said, ‘That is not the point. Whoever is shy of Allah as much as is His due, he should protect his head and that which it comprises (i.e. mind, mouth, ears), his stomach and that which is adjoining it (i.e. preserve it from unlawful wealth and protect the private parts from the unlawful), and he should remember death and that which is to come after it; and whoever desires the Hereafter should abandon the adornments of this world. Whoever fulfills these duties has been shy of Allah as much as is His due’.” (Musnad Ahmad)
Abdullah ibn Hisham, a companion of the Prophet, reports: “We were with the Prophet (peace be upon him) and he held Umar ibn Al-Khattab’s hand. Umar said to him: ‘Messenger of God! I love you more than anyone and anything else, apart from myself.’ The Prophet said to him: ‘By Him who holds my soul in His hand, this will not do, unless you love me more than you love yourself.’ Umar said: ‘Well, now you are indeed dearer to me than my own self.’ The Prophet said: ‘Now, Umar, you have got it right.’” (Related by Al-Bukahri).
When someone does us a good turn, we feel grateful. If the good turn is bound to spare us exposure to some detriment, we feel heartily touched. If it brings us some happy feeling, we are ever so excited. Muhammad (peace be upon him) did us the best turn anyone can ever have, presenting to us divine guidance at its purest and most complete. He has spared us the worst calamity that can ever befall anyone, which is incurring God’s anger and punishment. He has given us the faith that is bound to fill us with the happiest feelings mankind can experience in this life. If we realize all this, how can we fail to love him more than we love ourselves?
‘Alqama reported: While I was walking with ‘Abdullah at Mina, ‘Uthman happened to meet him.He stopped there and began to talk with him. Uthman said to him: Abu ‘Abd al-Rahman, should we not marry you to a young girl who may recall to you some of the past of your bygone days; thereupon he said: If you say so, Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: 0 young men, those among you who can support a wife should marry, for it restrains eyes from casting (evil glances). and preserves one from immorality; but those who cannot should devote themselves to fasting for it is a means of controlling sexual desire.
‘Alqama reported: While I was going along with ‘Abdullah b. Ma’sud (Allah he pleased with him) in Mina, ‘Uthman b. ‘Affan (Allah be pleased with him) happened to meet him and said: Come here, Abu ‘Abd al-Rahman (kunya of Abdullah b. Mas’ud), and he isolated him (from me), and when ‘Abdullah (b.Mas’ud) saw that there was no need (for this privacy), he said to me: ‘Alqama, come on, and so I went there. (Then) ‘Uthman said to him: Abu Abd al-Rahman, should we not marry you to a virgin girl that your past may be recalled to your mind?’Abdullah said: If you say so, the rest of the hadith is the same as narrated above.
Abdullah (b. Mas’ud) (Allah be pleased with him) reported that Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) said to us: 0 young men, those among you who can support a wife should marry, for it restrains eyes (from casting evil glances) and preserves one from immorality; but he who cannot afford It should observe fast for it is a means of controlling the sexual desire.
Abu al-Rahman b. Yazid said:I and my uncle ‘Alqama and al-Aswad went to ‘Abdullah b. Mas’ud (Allah be pleased with him).He (the narrator further) said: I was at that time young, and he narrated a hadith which it seemed he narrated for me that Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) said like one transmitted by Mu’awiya, and further added: I lost no time in marrying.
Anas (Allah be pleased with him) reported that some of the Companions of Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) asked his (the Prophet’s) wives about the acts that he performed in private.Someone among them (among his Companions) said: I will not marry women; someone among them said: I will not eat meat; and someone among them said: I will not lie down in bed.He (the Holy Prophet) praised Allah and glorified Him, and said: What has happened to these people that they say so and so, whereas I observe prayer and sleep too; I observe fast and suspend observing them; I marry women also?And he who turns away from my Sunnah, he has no relation with Me.