Love For Other People What You Love For Yourself
// May 17th, 2010 // Blog
The following story was published back in March as part of a MuslimMatters post titled “On the Fingers of Abu Hurayrah…..Towards a Noble Life“. Since then, it has come to mind so many times during the course of normal, everyday interactions, I had to track it down, and bookmark it here.
“Love for other people what you love for yourself and you will be a (perfect) Muslim.” – Prophet Muhammed, sallalahu 'alayhi wa salam
An extraordinary example of putting this teaching into practice is that of some of our righteous predecessors.
Ibrahim al-Nakha'ee (rahimahullah) was a'war al-'ayn (blind in one eye), and his student Sulayman ibn Mihran suffered from weak eyesight (a'mash al-'ayn). Ibn al-Jawzi related a story about them in his book Al-Muntathim that they were walking in the streets of Al-Kufah headed to the masjid.
As they were walking, Imam Al-Nakha'ee said, “Sulayman, can you take one road and I take another? For I fear that if we were to pass together by the foolish people, they would say, 'A'war – one eyed – is leading an a'mash – bleary eyed- (through the road) and they would then have backbitten us and fallen into sins.”
So Sulayman replied, “O Abu 'Imran! What is wrong then when we are rewarded while they are sinful?”
Ibrahim al-Nakha'ee replied, “SubhanaAllah! Bal naslam wa yaslamun! Rather, that we be safe (from their backbiting) and they be safe (of sin) is better than if we are rewarded and they are sinful!”.
[al-Muntathim fee Tareekh al Muluk wal Umam]
This is a form of altruism that we all desperately need to adopt. There is a lot of bitterness, enmity and ill-will amongst us. We need to improve ourselves and one another with a far more loving attitude. May Allāh make it easy for us, āmīn.