Since man is a social being he/she would become happy if has a good associate or friend. In all ages and at all times man needs companions because he/she suffers from loneliness. Man would become happy when a friend or associate sits beside him/her and talk to him/her kindly, be their friendship short-lived or for a long time.
According the sacred religion of Islam whoever becomes our companion has certain rights incumbent upon us. In this regard, imam Sajjad (the fourth Imam of Muslims) has said: “And the right of your sitting companion is that you should treat him/her gently, warmly welcome him/her, be fair while talking with him/her, do not take your eyes off of him/her when you are looking at him/her, and pronounce your words clearly to help him/her understand what you say. And if you are the first one to go and sit with him/her, you can leave him/her when you wish. However, if he/she is the first one to come and sit with you, he/she can leave you when he/she wishes to. And you should not leave him/her without his/her permission. You should forget his/her slips and remember his/her good qualities, and you should tell nothing about him/her but good. And there is no power but in God.”(The Treatise on Rights, right n.31)
The intricacies of dealing with a friend, shows how important he/she is. These detailed guidelines help to creation a lasting friendship. And all of them indicate the prominent position of friendship in view of Islam.
Apart from bad men who their wicked traits block this mode of natural behavior in them, it is inherent in man to wish to recompense those who treat him kindly. Based on this principle of human the sacred religion of Islam, encourage its followers to compensate for the good deeds done for them and always wait for a chance to practically reward those who have somehow done them a favor. The Holy Quran says: “Is there any Reward for Good other than Good?”(55:60)
Thus, it is an important point to know how to behave with a person who treats us kindly. In this regard, there are valuable words from Imam Sajjad (the fourth Imam of Muslims). He said: “And the right of him who treats you kindly is that you should thank him and acknowledge his kindness; and spread the good word around about him, and sincerely pray for him between you and God the Praised One. Then if you do that, you have thanked him both in private and in public. Then if you are able to practically recompense him, do recompense him. Otherwise, you should be determined to do so later.”(The Treatise on Rights, right n.28)
One of the closest people to every man is his/her brother. Brother is a symbol of love and support. Two forms of brotherhood can be imagined. One is a blood and genetic relationship that is being born of the same parents. Another form of brotherhood that is mentioned in Islamic texts comes through common belief. In this form all the Muslims has related together and these intimate relationships has become the source of unity of all the Muslims in the world. In this regard The Holy Qur’an says:“The Believers are but a single Brotherhood: So make peace and reconciliation between your two (contending) brothers; and fear God, that ye may receive Mercy.” (49:10)
And this verse is considered one of the most important slogans of Islam.
Of course the position of brotherhood like other important positions follows some issues that need to be considered. In this regard Imam Sajjad (Peace Be Upon Him) said:
“And the right of your brother is that you should know that he is your hand that you extend, and your back to whom you seek refuge, and your power upon whom you rely, and your might with which you compete. Take him not as a weapon with which to disobey God, nor as a means with which to violate God’s rights. And do not neglect to help him against his own self and support him against his enemy, and intervene between him and his devils, and give him good counsel, and associate with him for God’s sake. Then if he obeys his Lord and is responsible towards Him properly it is fine. Else God should be more preferable and more honorable to you than he is.” (The Treatise on Rights, right n.25)
The Hajj is a special Islamic ceremony and the largest gathering of Muslims people in the world every year. In Hajj ceremony, those Muslims who fulfill the state of being physically and financially capable of performing the Hajj, pilgrimage Mecca at least once in his or her lifetime. The pilgrimage occurs from the 8th to 12th Dhu al-Hijjah, the 12th and last month of the Islamic calendar. Because the Islamic calendar is a lunar calendar, eleven days shorter than the Gregorian calendar used in the Western world, the Gregorian date of the Hajj changes from year to year. The word of ‘Hajj’ really means goal or intention and the reason this ceremony is called pilgrimage or ‘Hajj’ is that once you intend to visit the House of God (Ka’ba).
In this regard there is a tradition from Imam Sajjad (Peace Be Upon Him) that explains and makes clearer the aspects of this pilgrimage or Hajj. “And the right of pilgrimage is that you should know that it is an arrival at the threshold of your Lord and a flight to Him from your sins; and through it your repentance is accepted and you perform an obligation made incumbent upon you by God.”(The Treatise on Rights, right n.12)
The marriage and establishment of family is the best way to prevent adultery and the corruption of the society. The husband and wife build a home upon love, comfort and delight in which the couple shall live together their whole life, and raise boys and girls to continue the human society. This structure is only firm if both of husband and wife know about the mutual rights. Here we are going to write about the rights of wife.
Imam Sajjad (the fourth Imam of Muslims) said:
“And the right of your wife is that you should know that God has made her a repose, a comfort and a companion, and a protector for you. It is incumbent upon each of you to thank God for the other and realize that the other one is God’s blessing for you. It is obligatory to be a good companion for God’s blessing, and to honor her and treat her gently… She should enjoy the rights of mercy and intimacy, as she is an object of tranquility. You should care for her through consummation of the lust that must be consummated. And that is surely great. And there is no power but in God.(The Treatise on Rights, right n.20)
It is necessary to be a ruler in each society in order to run the affairs. Because a peaceful and strong society is the one in which there is a strong rule upon which security and order are established. This goal is achieved only in the presence of a mighty ruler.
On the other hand, there are people. The sacred religion of Islam stresses on the right of people and states that the ruler should be fair to the people due to the power that he/she has.
So what are the rights of people upon the ruler? Imam Sajjad (the fourth Imam of Muslims) has said:
“Then the right of your subjects through authority is that you should know that you have authority over them due to your power over them, and that they have been made your subjects through their weakness and humility. What do they deserve whose weakness and humility have made them your subjects, and made your authority over them effective? They cannot disobey you by their own might and power. They cannot find a supporter against your power except God, His Mercy and Protection and patience. How proper it is for you to recognize that God has granted you this increased might and power with which you have subdued others. You should be thankful to God. And God will increase His Graces to those who thank Him. And there is no power but from God.”(The Treatise on Rights, right n.18)
Have you ever thought about the right of prayer (Namaz)? Yes! The right of prayer! It may surprise you but if you know the importance of prayer you will acknowledge it. There are certain etiquettes for standing before an important person let alone standing before God.
“Then the right of your ritual prayer is that you should know that it is an arrival at the threshold of God and that through it you are standing before God.”(Imam Sajjad, the Treatise on Rights, right n.10) The God who created the universe and the life and death of beings are in his hand. “And when you realize that, then you will stand in the station of him who is lowly, vile, beseeching, trembling, hopeful, fearful, and abased. And you will magnify Him Who is before you through stillness, and bowing of the head, and humbleness of the limbs, and yielding of the wing, and by saying the best supplications to Him in yourself and beseeching Him to release (from punishment) your neck that is encompassed by your offenses and destroyed by your sins. And there is no power but in God.”(Ibid)
Yes dears! The main problem with today’s humans is the lack of a true relationship with God. And until this problem is not solved other problems will not be resolved.
The charity can be practiced with two forms: Private and public. Of course there is no doubt that both forms are good because one important goal of charity is economic benefit that help to reduce the gap between the rich and the poor. The Holy Quran says:“If ye disclose (acts of) charity, even so it is well, but if ye conceal them, and make them reach those (really) in need, that is best for you: It will remove from you some of your (stains of) evil. And God is well acquainted with what ye do.”(2:271) But between private and public charity which form is recommended? Before answering this question it is nice to refer to a matter of Islamic teachings. Islam teaches us that what is donated in charity will reach God first and it will not get lost. Indeed it is a storing away with The Lord. So, no matter whether anyone is aware or not. Hence, due to God knows it, giving charity in private is better than in public.
In this regard, Imam Sajjad (the fourth Imam of Muslims) has said:“It is more appropriate for you to do privately what you now do in public and keep the affairs between you and Him [God] secret under all circumstances. And you should also not take your hearing and sight as witnesses for the donations that you make in charity as if you have the most trust in yourself. It should not be as if you are not sure that your donations will be returned to you.”(The Treatise on Rights, Right n.13)
“Nor forget thy portion in this world…”(The Holy Qur’an, 28:77) Islamic teachings are based on reality. So, Islam has never commanded almsgiving entire property because the person will be poor. And it is unacceptable to Islam because one of the main goals of Islam is the elimination of poverty. Hence, Charity in Islam is according to the financial ability of each individual and it is a form of savings. It might seem to us that we lose what we give away in charity while it is not so. Imam Sajjad (the fourth Imam of Muslims) has said:“And the right of charity is that you should know that it is a storing away with your Lord and a deposit for which you will have no need for witnesses, Then once you know this you will be more confident of it if you donate it in secret than if you donate it in public.”(The Treatise on Rights, Right n.13)
Although both forms of public and private charities are beneficial but Imam highly stresses giving charity in private. Charity in private is safe from some pests such hypocrisy. Imam Hossein (the third Imam of Muslims) said:“Giving charity in secret will quench the Wrath of the Lord and wipe out wrong-doings just as water puts out fire. It will also ward off seventy types of calamities.”(Wasa’il al-Shi’ah, p.277)
As it is said, both forms of charities are beneficial. Let’s try.
Have you ever thought about your feet? Those two organs that help us to walk and are like two parallel lines. In our country, some people liken each of the legs to number one and say them together eleven and believe that they are the cheapest and most available means of transport. However, the value and importance of the legs is no secret. So, what is our duty now? What is the proper use of this great blessing? Imam Sajjad (the fourth Imam of Muslims) answers this question:
“And the right of your legs is that you walk not with them toward that which is unlawful for you. And you should not direct them in the way that will lead the person they carry to being debased. Your legs will carry you in the direction of the religion and they will help you go ahead. And there is no power but in God.”(The Treatise on Rights, right n.6)
Be careful! Improper use of the legs has very bad consequences. Because in The Day of Judgment people’s body parts like legs will witness:
“On the Day when their tongues, their hands, and their feet will bear witness against them as to their actions…”[The Holy Qur’an, 24:24]
Some commentators believe that our body parts will certainly carry the effects of what was done by them during our lifetime. The appearance of these effects is like them witnessing. A Persian poet said: “The color of the face witnesses about the secret within.”
However we are responsible for the action of our legs and we will be asked about blessings.