As soon as someone becomes Muslim, he or she is given rights even if they are in remote areas at ends of the world. These rights are given without discussion and in fact we will all be asked about these, as if these were obligatory rights, we will get asked by Allah SWT if we fulfilled them.
We will be asked did we fulfil these rights to its full extent. Dear brothers and sisters, its rights such as these ones in today’s reminder that is the fabric of our society, our ummah. This is because that through these rights, we are kept together, as when a part of your body is in pain, the entire body is in pain.
The first ayat mentioned is ayat 10 from Sura Al-Hujarat:
The believers are but brothers, so make settlement between your brothers. And fear Allah that you may receive mercy.
And ayat 71 from Surat Tuaba which is:
The believing men and believing women are allies of one another. They enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong and establish prayer and give zakah and obey Allah and His Messenger. Those – Allah will have mercy upon them. Indeed, Allah is Exalted in Might and Wise.
And as the Prophet SAWS said: None of you will believe unless he loves to his brother as he loves for himself.
Dear brothers and sisters, this is important because we are guilty of losing sight of this when we live amongst people who do not have these rights for one another. Look again at our history as Muslims and recall that the first act that the Prophet peace and blessings be upon him did after his immigration was to make the immigrants from Mecca brothers to the residents of Madina, and this was prior to building of a Masjid, as we can not have a community without the brotherhood, as any other dealings are for worldly, and this relationship can turn sour very quickly once the benefit from each other diminishes.
Practically, the duties we have towards one another come in the form of advice that we received from our blessed teacher, the best of all creation. Six duties are mentioned in this next hadith which, at the very least, should be strongly recommended for us to do. It is translated to say:
“A Muslim has six duties towards other Muslims: When you meet him, you should salute him; when he invites you, accept his invitation; when he asks for your advice, give it to him; when he sneezes and praises Allah, say May Allah have mercy on you; when he is ill, visit him; and when he dies follow his funeral.”
Another hadith speaks of a single important practical tip of giving salaam to each other. It is translated to say:
You shall not enter Paradise so long as you do not affirm belief (in all those things which are the articles of faith) and you will not believe as long as you do not love one another. Should I not direct you to a thing which, if you do, will foster love amongst you: (i. e.) give currency to (the practice of paying salutation to one another by saying) as-salamu alaikum.
In a different hadith, we are told this salaam is applied to those we know and those we don’t know. Dear brothers and sisters, it’s not difficult to spot the Muslim when we are out and about. Especially areas near here, in Rusholme, Longsight etc. Do we make an effort to say salaam to each other when passing or in shops? Or are we guilty of not following this important advice of the Prophet SAWS?
Another hadith states the importance of how we deal with each other as Muslims. It’s translated to say:
A Muslim is the brother of a fellow-Muslim. He should neither commit oppression upon him nor ruin him, and he who meets the need of a brother, Allah would meet big needs, and he who relieved a Muslim from hardship Allah would relieve him from the hardships to which he would be put on the Day of Resurrection, and he who did not expose (the sins of a Muslim) Allah would conceal his sins on the Day of Resurrection.
Dear brothers and sisters, if we think about this, our direct account with Allah SWT depends on how we interact with our brothers and sisters in this life. There is a direct correlation between the love and mercy we show to one another and the love and mercy Allah SWT will show us.
Further to this advice, the Prophet gave deeper advice on our interaction with each other. He said:
A Muslim is a brother to a Muslim. He should neither deceive him nor lie to him, nor leave him without assistance. Everything belonging to a Muslim is sacred for a Muslim; his honour, his blood and property. Piety is here (and he pointed out to his chest thrice). It is enough for a Muslim to commit evil by despising his Muslim brother.
And the last practical advice this week is a practice which is forgotten about but one that I guarantee each of us will wish we have done for us. The hadith translates to say:
Whoever accompanies the funeral (the dead body) until he performs the funeral prayer will have a reward equal to (one Qirat), and whoever accompanies the burial procession, will be doubly awarded (two Qirat).” They then asked, ‘What is meant by the two Qirat?’ He replied (ﷺ) “Like two huge mountains.
Dear brothers, following the janaza or the Muslim who has died is a duty on each of us. Some are guilty of only doing this for the famous or important but this is a duty on each of us for all Muslims, regardless of their status in this world.
And with that this reminder concludes. In a world that is more divided that ever, it is our duty as Muslims to establish ties with one another. Today’s reminder has just provided the reason and ways in which we can do that.