Wow, well done!
There were two brothers in the Israel society (of Prophet Moses PBUH). One of them was very pious while the other was a sinner. The pious man used to advice his sinner brother. Once, conquered by anger he told : “Allah will never forgive you, nor you will enter Paradise”. When both of them will be presented in front of Allah (on the Day of Judgement), Allah would tell the sinner: “You may enter Paradise with my Mercy” and would tell the pious: “Did you think you know me better? Then, you go to hellfire.” After reporting this story told by Prophet (May Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon him), Abu Huraira (RA) said: “A single word one utter is enough to turn one’s destiny upside down.” [From Baihaqi, Shuabul-Imaan].
This lesson from Prophet (PBUH) teaches us the power of our words and how should be our approach towards sinners. As the most important means of communication, words play a vital role in our lives. At times, an unfair word might invite numerous troubles. Even a single inappropriate word has the power to break the bonds of relationships apart. When we convey the words, which appreciate others’ goodness, help them grow and nourish their love, it will strengthen our relationships and deepen our coteries.
You will never learn, no avail advising you, you didn’t do it well, you don’t know anything etc.- as we hate to listen to conversations like this, we should also hate to say the same. Instead, we can say- “Well done”, “You did it well, you have the caliber to improve it”, “great, try and you can make it even better” – the words of inspiration – these invite benefits for both talker and listener. Such words of kindness in our conversations with our spouse, children, students and more importantly making them the weapon of every preacher, will bring forth success. The other way around, things will never end up in real success. At times, even the best spikes of a plant tend to wither. It needs water and nourishment to grow green again, right?
Seeing and expecting only goodness from others is the quality of a Muslim. Good minds see goodness in others and bad minds see faults in others. We are obliged to save everyone from the pitfalls of wrongdoing. However before that we must learn and acquaint the effective way to carry it out. If not, the outcome will be worst.
There is a well known advice of Umar Khatab (RA): “If you find one among you committing a sin, you must try to vitalize and guide him to the right path and pray to Allah for his repentance and forgiveness. You should never help Satan in the matters of your brother.” (Shuabul Imaan 6690)
Let’s see how Abdullah Bin Abbas (RA) explains the Qur’anic teaching “believers are merciful among themselves” [Qur'an 48:29]. “The pious among them seek forgiveness for the sinners. When a sinner among the Muslim looks to a pious man, the latter should say : O God, give him the blessing of good of which you have decreed for him and keep him firm over it and give him benefit therewith. When a pious man looks to a sinner among them, he should pray for him thus : O God, give him guidance, accept his repentance and forgive his sins. ” [Ihya-ul-uloomidheen, Vol 2]
Abu Darra’ (RA) said: “Don’t hate sinners but their sin, and make them your friends when they stop committing sins”. Enjoining good is our duty. However, we must carry out this job without hurting and insulting anyone’s feelings. Prophet (PBUH) said: Loss to him who judges so and so in in heaven and so on so is in hell. [Imaam Suyudhi, Jami-u-ssagheer 9650]
He who preaches the message of the Most Compassionate must reflect compassion and kindness in his mind. When words flow from the bottom of our heart, the influence and change it would bring forth will be immense. Words that come from our heart will fall in the listener’s heart. Whereas when it come from our tongue, it only falls in the ears. Admonitions flowing from the hearts may not need to utter or they do not make sound either. One of the best gift we can give to others is respect and recognition. That is the secret of success in every relationship. The value and vastness of honor is very significant from the verse of Qur’an where it says Allah, the Almighty has honored the children of Adam.
“And We have certainly honored the children of Adam and carried them on the land and sea and provided for them of the good things and preferred them over much of what We have created, with [definite] preference.” [Quran 17:70]
Our admonitions should be the rhythm of words wrapped in honor and love. Remember that even a wee kid has his own feelings and self-esteem. Every word that we speak should be by understanding and respecting others’ sense of self-esteem and feelings. By praising the good qualities in others and by adoring them without hesitation, we can ensure a seat in the hearts of listeners. Thereby, we would achieve the freedom to admonish and point out their faults.
Accusations only help amass the sins. Allah has not assigned us the duty of anyone. Even the the Prophet (PBUH) had told :”By Allah, I do not know what Allah will do with me (on the Day of Judgement) though I am Allah’s Apostle..” [Part of Hadith Bukhari 1243]
Let’s take a minute and ponder over below warning from Khalifa Umar (RA):
The only fear I would have about you is that everyone thinks their opinion is the best. If anyone claims himself as a scholar, then he is not. So does with the one who claims himself as the heir of heaven. [Khansu-ul-maal – 8862]
English rendering of article written by Abdul Wadud!