Rights of your neighbors in IslamsteemCreated with Sketch.

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What is Neighborhood?

A neighborhood is a geographically localized community within a larger city, town, suburb or rural area. Neighborhoods are often social communities with considerable face-to-face interaction among members. Researchers have not agreed on an exact definition, but the following may serve as a starting point: "Neighborhood is generally defined spatially as a specific geographic area and functionally as a set of social networks. Neighborhoods, then, are the spatial units in which face-to-face social interactions occur—the personal settings and situations where residents seek to realize common values, socialize youth, and maintain effective social control.

Data Source: Neighborhood - Wikipedia

Islam has great respect for the mutual rights and duties of neighbors. The Holy Prophet said:

Jibra'l always used to advise me to be generous with neighbors, till I thought that Allah was going to include the neighbors among the heirs of a Muslim.

The rights of neighborhood are not meant for Muslim neighbors only. of course, a Muslim neighbor has one more claim upon us - that of Islamic brotherhood; but so far as the rights of neighborship are concerned, all are equal.

Explaining it, the Holy Prophet said:
Neighbors are of three kinds:
(1) that one who has got one right upon you;
(2) that one who has got two rights upon you;
(3) that one who has got three rights upon you.

The neighbor having three rights upon you is the one who is also a Muslim and a relative.
The neighbor having two rights is the one who is either a non-Muslim or a non-relative Muslim.
The neighbor having one right is the one who is neither a Muslim nor a relative. Still he has got all the claims of neighborhood-rights upon you.

Every society works through a system of interdependence of individuals with one another. It has some norms and values, which combine people in a continuous process to perform their duties and achieve their rights in turn. Islam places great importance on maintaining balance in a community through peace and mutual care, especially in the case of neighbors.

Allah SWT says in the Holy Quran:

The above mentioned Quranic verses illustrate that in addition to having complete faith in the Power of Atonement, one needs to fulfill the privileges of family members such as parents and relatives, care for orphans and poor surroundings, both near and nearby neighbors, and travelers etc. Thus, this one contains a comprehensive plan of carrying out responsibilities in any social order that begins with the family and is scattered throughout the community.
Regarding the high status and implementation of rights of a neighbor, the Messenger (PBUH) of God was once reported by Abu Hurairah (R.A) to have said:

One who believes in Allah (the Glorified and the Exalted) and the Day of Judgment must not cause hardship and inconvenience to his neighbor; and he who believes in Allah (the Glorified and the Exalted) and the Day of Judgment must respect his guest; and he who believes in Allah (the Glorified and the Exalted) and the Day of Judgment must speak well or keep quiet”. (Bukhari and Muslim)

Some of the foremost rights of neighbors that one should take care of are as follows:

Giving Meals to them
Giving Food
Image source: Restore Hope

Food is one of the most essential physiological needs of a person. No one can ever imagine living without it. So, being a true Muslim, one should be highly considerate in this respect, and look around whether the close by tenants are in need of some cuisine in order to serve them with something to eat. Abu Dharr (R.A) narrates that the Holy Prophet (PBUH) said to him:

O Abu Dharr! Whenever you prepare a broth, put plenty of water in it, and give some of it to your neighbors”. (Muslim)

This saying of the Apostle (PBUH) of God tells us to always distribute one`s meal with its neighbors so that their rights could be served well.

Ensuring Safety Of Neighbors

Everyone wants to make sure of security of its loved ones. It is the basic need to survive in the world. Most of the mischief in a community is spread through direct violation of others protection, which leads to further worsening of situations, as people react directly to every wrong done to them. That is why the religion of Islam stresses on keeping a friendly atmosphere in one's living area so that it would not lead to infringement of someone else`s human rights. Abu Hurairah (R.A) reported:

The Prophet (PBUH) said, “By Allah, he is not a believer! By Allah, he is not a believer! By Allah, he is not a believer.” It was asked, “Who is that, O Messenger of Allah?” He said, “One whose neighbor does not feel safe from his evil”. (Bukhari and Muslim)

It shows that one cannot attain the status of a true Muslim until or unless it does not ensure that its activities are not defying the fundamental requirement of safety of its neighbors.

Giving Them Presents
Giving Presents
Image Source: Xtra Presents
As it is common observation that sharing gifts enhances affection among each other, so being a Muslim, it is highly advisable to give away some presents to one`s close inhabitants so as to promote a culture of harmony and tranquility. Abu Hurairah (R.A) reported that the Messenger (PBUH) of Allah said:

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]

It means that one should not stop from presenting its neighbor with anything it could, no matter how small that object appears to be. It may well be possible the receiver of the gift appreciates its value more than one ever imagined about.

Being Good To Them In All Respects

Besides sharing food, ensuring security, and giving presents to one's neighbors, as a Muslim, one should keep the most excellent possible conduct with them under all circumstances. Abdullah bin Umar (R.A) reported that the Apostle (PBUH) of Allah said:

"The best of companions with Allah is the one who is best to his companions, and the best of neighbors to Allah is the one who is the best of them to his neighbor". (Tirmidhi)

So, one should always be at its best in keeping just behavior with its nearby residents including both physical and verbal actions.

Abdullah Ibn Umar (R.A) and Aisha (R.A) related the Holy Prophet, Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) saying as:

"Angel Jibril (peace be upon him) kept exhorting me about (the rights of) the neighbor so much so that I thought that the neighbor might be included as one of the heirs." (Bukhari and Muslim)

Such is the immense importance of dealing with one`s neighbors properly that Rasulullah (PBUH) felt if they would even be given the rights in inheritance.

Below are ten tips on how to approach your non-Muslim neighbors in a kind way that exemplifies Islamic manners:

  1. Being good to neighbors is not only restricted to those who share the same building with you. Your roommate at the dorm is your neighbor; the person sitting behind you or next to you in a bus or at a bus stop is your neighbor; the one sharing your office at work is your neighbor; the person enjoying fresh air next to you in a public garden is also a neighbor. You ought to treat all of those people kindly and socialize with them within the permitted scope of Shariah Islamic Law.

  2. Introduce yourself and your family to your neighbors when you move into a new place or when new neighbors move in. This will also help to relieve any fears or tensions they may have about Muslims. Also, don't forget to say good-bye when you or they move away.

  3. Care for them continually, especially at times of need and distress, as "the neighbor in need is a neighbor indeed." If a neighbor is elderly or chronically ill, offer to run errands or shop for him or her.

  4. In dealing with neighbors, it is safer to deal with those of the same sex as yourself. This does not mean that you should stop socializing at work or school with your non-Muslim workmates or classmates of the opposite sex, but be aware of satanic snares. After-hours socializing should be with your same sex.

  5. While socializing with non-Muslims, be cautious of becoming too lenient at the expense of your creed and principles. For example, don't go out drinking with them. They will respect you more for sticking to your principles than for breaking the rules.

  6. In addition to sharing ideas, you can share meals with them by inviting them to dinner on the weekend or accepting their invitation to the same, provided that you let them know about your dietary restrictions (Halal and Haram) as a Muslim.

  7. Conduct mutual visits so that the families can interact in a constructive way. If the discussion does turn to religion, focus on areas of common ground. For example, if your neighbors are Christian, then you should not enter into a futile argument with them about whether Jesus is God incarnate or not. Rather, tell them to what extent Islam honors all God's Prophets and Messengers as a whole, and that Jesus is granted a special status among God's Prophets and Messengers.

  8. While socializing with neighbors, present your religion (Islam) in the best way. If you are faced with a difficult question or a distortion about Islam, do not be ashamed to stop for a while and tell them that you will try to contact a more knowledgeable person to seek the guidance regarding the issue raised. Thus, common grounds should be enhanced, and areas of dissension should never be raised.

  9. If your neighbors show an interest in Islam, invite them to attend Islamic events, and even to accompany you to the mosque to see what it is like. It may be that their hearts become softened to Islam, and if they remain non-Muslim, at least you have succeeded in breaking the barrier. You can also visit the church where your neighbors pray if they invite you to do that, but here you should be cautious not to perform any act that your religion prohibits. In brief, be only a watchful monitor.

  10. Always keep in mind the mighty reward that is in store for you in the Hereafter when you show kindness to a neighbor.

The Holy Prophet said:

That man is not from me who sleeps contentedly while his neighbour sleeps hungry.

Al-Imam Ali ibn al-Husayn (a. s.) in his Risalat al-Huquq, said:

These are your duties towards your neighbour: Protect his interests when he is absent; show him respect when he is present; help him when he is inflicted with any injustice. Do not remain on the look-out to detect his faults; and if, by any chance, you happen to know any undesirable thing about him, hide it from others; and, at the same time, try to desist him from improper habits, if there is any chance that he will listen to you. Never leave him alone at any calamity. Forgive him, if he has done any wrong. In short, live with him a noble life, based on the highest Islamic ethical code.

My Steemian brothers and sisters, lets love others as we love ourselves. No thug, No hooliganism in Islam. If you see someone that is doing bad thing, please know that is doing that with personal interest because Islam forbid such behavior.

If you found this worth sharing, kindly resteem and upvote.

Thank you all.


Wow, that's very awesome. Lookin from afar it's beautiful. Nice write up

Thanks brother, please resteem to let people know about this.

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Nice write bro, keep it up

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