Understanding the Prophet's Life~

Neighbours have rights, be they Muslims or non-Muslims. The Prophet of Allah said: "He is not a true Believer who eats his fill while his neighbour is hungry". (Baihaqi.)
Thus, the quality of our Din and fate in the Akhirat will also be determined by how well we fulfill our obligations towards our neighbours. In a hadith narrated by Abu Hurairah, may Allah be pleased with him, a man said:
"O Messenger of Allah, such and such woman has a reputation for engaging very much in Prayers, Fasting and Almsgiving, but she hurts her neighbours with her tongue quite often." He said, "She will go to Hell." Then he said, "O Messenger of Allah, such and such woman engages in only a little Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving and gives just a few pieces of cheese in charity, but she does not hurt her neighbours with her tongue". He said,"She will go to Paradise." (Ahmad, Baihaqi)
One class of neighbours is our relatives. Another class are those who are not our relatives and the third class of neighbours are those who sit with us, even for a few minutes. This third class of neighbours is a very wide group and includes those who sit by our side. If we are travelling in a taxi, bus, train or aeroplane the person who is sitting by our side is our neighbour. If we are in the office, our co-worker is our neighbour. If we are at school, our classmate is our neighbour.
Among the rights of your neighbour is that his life, property and honour must be protected. Violation of any of them is haram or unlawful. His life is inviolable. Remember that the life of a non-Muslim is as important as that of a Muslim. The Prophet Muhammad said that "One who kills a non-Muslim whose protection is pledged will never smell the fragrance of Janna, even though it reaches as far as 40 years distance". (BukhariMuslim.)
So the life of the non-Muslim is also inviolable, as is his property and his honour. All must be respected and safeguarded. This is especially important for us to consider because we live in a multi-cultural and multi-religious society and, unfortunately, there are many misconceptions prevailing among Muslims about the extent of their obligations towards non-Muslims. The Prophet himself used to pay special attention to the needs of non-Muslims even when there was poverty, hardship and difficulties in the Muslim community.


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