The Muslim and his Neighbour

The Muslim and his Neighbour

He is not a believer whose stomach is filled while the neighbour to his side goes hungry

Prophet Muhammad, al-Sunan al-Kubrá

There is great emphasis on the neighbour in Islam. The idea is, if we all look after at least our neighbours, then the whole community will be at security. In Surah Nisa, Verse 36, Allah says:

Worship Allah and associate nothing with Him, and to parents do good, and to relatives, orphans, the needy, the near neighbor, the neighbor farther away, the companion at your side, the traveler, and those whom your right hands possess. Indeed, Allah does not like those who are self-deluding and boastful.

Surah Nisa: 36

Allah commands us to take care of those closest and furthest to us. Imam Hasan was asked about the neighbour, he said, “The neighbour includes the forty houses in front a person, the forty houses behind him, the forty houses on his right and the forty houses on his left.” Clearly this includes most of the block for us. What’s more, is the hierarchy of the who has the most right; firstly it’s family-related neighbour, then a Muslim neighbour and then a non-muslim neighbour.

Aisha reports:

Jibreel kept on recommending that I treat neighbors well until I thought that he would order me to treat them as my heirs

Bukhari

Show Kindness

Firstly be kind to your neighbour. Smile at them and be polite. Let them know they can trust you and if they ever need help, they can turn to you. If you see them in difficulty, then give a helping hand.

During the year, if you’ve cooked, don’t shy from sharing some food with your neighbour.

Even if your neighbour doesn’t share with you, you continue. Your intention is for Allah’s sake and your reward is with Allah. The more you fight any discontent, the higher the reward Insha’Allah.

We’re all too busy to meet the neighbour or sometimes expect them to meet us. If someone has moved in, don’t shy from saying Salaam. Take over some goodies to break the ice and make them feel welcome.

The above stipulations are not restricted to Muslims. It does not matter who your neighbour is, always treat your neighbour with kindness.

He who believes in Allah and the Last Day, let him be kind to his neighbor

Muslim

Connect

Don’t leave relationships to only your way out, but invite neighbours around for a cup of tea or even a meal. For every minute of care, there is reward and goodness. You’re building ties, you’re lending someone an ear, you’re providing good advice, you’re fulfilling a sunnah.

This also helps when you need a friend or when you need a companion to go with you to some event. Or maybe they know someone for your daughter.

Share

When you make something, send some over to your neighbour. Or buy an extra pack soft drink and give it to your neighbour.

O Muslim women! No one of you should consider insignificant (a gift) to give to her neighbor even if it is (a gift of) the trotters of a sheep

Bukhari and Muslim

Another way to share is by sharing Islamic Knowledge. Maybe you can start weekly short halaqas on sharing on the deen or tips and pointers. Your level of deen will inspire others and guess what, for every good action, you will also receive the reward.

The best of companions in the sight of Allah Almighty is the best of them towards his companion, and the best of neighbors in the sight of Allah is the best of them towards his neighbor.

Think about your neighbours.

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