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Keeping the Right Friends

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Keeping the Right Friends

'Who we keep company with is reflective of who we are'

 

For as far back as I can remember, my parents would always admonish me and my siblings to keep good company. My Dad specially had a favorite saying, "Show me your friends and I'll tell you who you are."

 

Needless to say, I was always very conscious, and careful about choosing the right people to surround myself with. In Islam it is doubly true and essential to surround yourself with righteous companions, because they will help to keep your feet planted on the straight path, while doing otherwise may lead you astray.

 

It was Ahmad ibn Harb, rahimahullaah, who said, "There is nothing more beneficial to a Muslim's heart than to mix with the righteous and to watch their actions, while nothing is more harmful to the heart of the Muslim than mixing with sinners, and watching their actions." No matter who you are, or how strong or independent you may feel, no man, or woman, is an island, and you can't make it through this life alone. This is why Islam so stresses the Jama'ah, or the congregation. The sayings that there is strength in numbers and that it is the lone sheep that gets devoured by the wolf are true.

 

Therefore we need to adopt correct manners, in that we try ardently never to do an action or to befriend anyone without knowing whether the pleasure of Allah Ta'ala is in it or not, and never loving and hating for worldly reasons. For the Prophet of Allah Ta'ala, sallallahu alayhi wassalaam said, "Whoever loves for Allah, and hates for Allah, gives for Allah and withholds for Allah, has completed his faith." (Abu Dawud) So who should be our companions?

 

First of all they should be good Muslims, who believe in Allah and His Messenger. For Allah Ta'ala says in the Qur'an, "And who so obeys Allah and the Messenger [Muhammad, sallallahu alayhe wassalaam], then they will be in the company of those on whom Allah has bestowed His Grace, of the Prophets, the Siddiqun (those followers of the prophets who were first and foremost to believe in them), the Martyrs, and the Righteous. And how excellent these companions are." [4:69]

 

Secondly, being around them should make you want to increase in good deeds. Allah Ta'ala says, "And We have sent down to you [O Muhammad, sallallahu alayhe wasallam], the Book [this Qur'an] in truth, confirming the Scriptures that came before it and Mohayminan over it. So judge between them by what Allah has revealed, and follow not their vain desires, diverging away from the truth that has come to you. To each among you, We have prescribed a law and a clear way. If Allah willed, He would have made you one nation, but that may test you in what He has given you; so strive as in a race in good deeds. The return of you is to Allah; then He will inform you about that in which you used to differ." [5:48]. By aligning ourselves with people who do good deeds, we are then prompted to compete with them in this regard, and thus improving the character and the religion of everyone involved.

 

Lastly, but by no means the least, our companions should help us to remember Allah Ta'ala. For Allah Ta'ala says, "O you who believe! Let not your properties or your children divert you from the remembrance of Allah. And whosoever does this, then they are the losers." [63:9] .In this time of hustle and bustle, it is very easy for us to get caught up in the pursuit of worldly gains. This is why it is increasingly important to surround ourselves with people, who will encourage us to think of Allah Ta'ala, in every instance of our lives.

 

The superiority of the remembrance of Allah was explained by the Prophet Muhammad, sallallahu alayhe wasallam, who said, "The example of the one who remembers his Lord, in comparison to the one who does not remember his Lord, is that of a living creature compared to a dead one. (Bukhari)

 

So let us take stock of the people we spend our time with. Do they fall into the above categories?. If our friends aren't doing these things, then what does being with them say about us?. We should strive to love those who love Allah Ta'ala, and to hate those who hate Allah Ta'ala, and what He has sent down of guidance for humanity. For the Prophet, sallallahu alayhe wasallam said, "Whoever possesses three things will find the sweetness of eman. For Allah and His Messenger to be more beloved to him than anything else; to love a person for Allah's sake alone; and to hate to return to disbelief the way he hates to be thrown into the fire." (Bukhari)

 

Sumayyah bint Joan

islaaminfo.co.za

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FRIENDS ARE LIKE TREES

 

treeblue.jpg

 

 

I have this tree analogy when I think of people in my life, be it friends, family, acquaintances, employees, co-workers, whomever... They are all placed inside what I call my tree test. I goes like this:

 

LEAF PEOPLE

Some people come into your life and they are like leaves on a tree. They are only there for a season. You can’t depend on them or count on them because they are weak and only there to give you shade. Like leaves, they are there to take what they need and as soon as it gets cold or a wind blows in your life they are gone.

 

You can’t be angry at them, it’s just who they are.

 

BRANCH PEOPLE

There are some people who come into your life and they are like branches on a tree. They are stronger than leaves, but you have to be careful with them. They will stick around through most seasons, but if you go through a storm or two in your life it’s possible that you could lose them. Most times they break away when it’s tough. Although they are stronger than leaves, you have to test them out before you run out there and put all your weight on them. In most cases they can’t handle too much weight.

 

But again, you can’t be mad with them, it’s just who they are.

 

ROOT PEOPLE

If you can find some people in your life who are like the roots of a tree then you have found something special. Like the roots of a tree, they are hard to find because they are not trying to be seen. Their only job is to hold you up and help you live a strong and healthy life. If you thrive, they are happy. They stay low key and don’t let the world know that they are there. And if you go through an awful storm they will hold you up. Their job is to hold you up, come what may, and to nourish you, feed you and water you. Just as a tree has many limbs and many leaves, there are few roots.

 

Look at your own life. How many leaves, branches and roots do you have? What are you in other people’s lives?

 

THANK ALLAAH FOR THE ROOTS!

 

(Source: Jamiatul Ulama (KZN) blog)

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Friends

By Hadrat Mawlānā Muhammad Saleem Dhorat hafizahullāh

 

It is very important for every Muslim to make sure that his choice of friends and the company he keeps is correct. It has been proven through experience that the habits and behaviour of friends and associates slowly enter into an individual. Without realising, a person begins to adopt the style and behaviour of his friends. We are all witnesses to this fact. Sadly, I can recall many incidents where those who were pious, religious and good in character lost all of their good qualities because they kept bad company and associated with an inappropriate circle of friends. I have also seen others who were drowning in sins and evil, who underwent a complete revolution in their lives after adopting the company of a pious person of high moral standards. Rasūlullāh sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam advised,

 

A person is on the way of his friend. Therefore he should think very carefully whom he is making a friend. (At-Tirmidhī, Abū Dāwūd, Ahmad)

 

Sincere Friends

We need friends who are sincere, genuine and, true in their friendship. Those who care for our well-being from every aspect are true friends. Those who have concern not only for the needs of this temporary life but also for the requirements of our everlasting life are our real friends.

 

Allāh is Sufficient for Love

There is only one Supreme Being Who is worthy of 'true' love and friendship and this is Allāh ta‘ālā. For love and friendship, He alone is enough. Rasūlullāh sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam commented,

 

If I were to take a khalīl (intimate friend) other than my Lord, I would have taken Abū Bakr. (Al-Bukhārī) 

 

Here, despite such close ties and such a strong bond of friendship with Sayyidunā Abū Bakr radhiyallāhu ‘anhu, Rasūlullāh sallallāhu ‘alayhi wasallam explains that the highest level of intimacy is reserved only for Allāh ta‘ālā. However, when one becomes engrossed in Divine love and then in the light of this love, one befriends and loves somebody, then inshā’allāh this form of friendship will prove beneficial in both worlds.

 

This is an extract from the booklet ‘Friendship & our Young Generation’

 published by the Islāmic Da'wah Academy

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