The Social Aspect of Islam

Islam has introduced social laws which set rights, and duties of every individual to ensure stability in society. Some of these rights are specific while oth - ers are general. Of the specific rights are:

Rights Owed to the Ruler

  • Muslims must obey the ruler as long as he does not order them to do something forbidden in Islam. Allah says: (O you who believe! Obey Allah and obey the Messenger (Muhammad) ,(and those of you (Mus - lims) who are in authority.) [4:59]
  • They must give sincere advice to the ruler, in a good and kind manner, by guiding him and his people to beneficial things, and to remind him of the needs of his subjects. Allah instructed Moses and his brother Aaron upon sending them to Pharaoh to preach the true Religion to him: (And speak to him mildly, perhaps he may accept admonition or fear (Allah).) [20:44]

    The Prophet ( s) said: “‘The Religion is sincerity.’ We said ‘To whom?’ He said ‘To Allah, and His Book, and His Messenger, and to the leaders of the Muslims and their common folk.” (Muslim)

  • To support him in times of adversity and crises and not to revolt against him or forsake him, even if one was from a group who does not pledge allegiance to him. The Prophet ( s) said: “Whoever comes to you while you are all united under a single leader and wishes to disrupt the unity and solidarity (of the Muslims), kill him.” (Muslim)

Rights Owed to the Ruled

    These rights fall under five general fundamentals:

  • Justice. This is achieved by giving everyone their due right. A ruler is required to be just, such that he protects others’ rights, performs his duties, distributes responsibilities, and implements rules and decisions. All should stand as equals before him… no individual or group should be favored above others. The Prophet ( s) said: “Indeed the most beloved person to Allah and the closest one to be seated to Him on the Day of Requital will be a just ruler. And indeed the most detestable person on the Day of Requital and the most severe of them in punishment will be a tyrannical ruler.” (at-Tirmidhi)
  • He must not oppress, deceive, or behave treacherously towards the masses. The Prophet ( s) said: “No slave is given responsibility over some people and dies in a state in which he is treacherous to them, except that Allah forbids him from Paradise.” (Muslim)
  • He must consult them regarding all affairs pertaining to their political, social and economic interests(1). He must allow them to voice their views, and he must accept such views if they prove to be in the best interest of the public. Allah says: (And by the Mercy of Allah, you dealt with them gently. And had you been severe and harsh hearted, they would have broken away from you; so pass over (their faults), and ask (Allah’s) Forgiveness for them; and consult them in the affairs.) [3:159]

    The Messenger of Allah ( s) encamped behind the wells before the Battle of Badr, so one of his Companions (Al-Hubab ibn al-Mundhir) asked him: “Has Allah inspired you to choose this spot, or is it strategy of war?” The Prophet replied: “It is the strategy of war.” Upon that, Al-Hubab said to the Prophet: “Let us go and encamp after the wells in order to prevent the enemy from them (from drinking).” So the Prophet ( s) took his advice.

  • His laws and constitution should be in accordance to Islamic Law. There is no room for him to judge according to his imperfect whims or desires. ‘Umar ibn ul-Khattaab, the second Caliph of Islam, said to Abu Maryam as-Salooli who killed his brother, Zaid ibn ul-Khattaab: “By Allah, I will not like you until the earth likes blood!” He replied, “Will this [hatred] deprive me of my rights?” ‘Umar said, “No.” He then said: “Then there is no harm, for only women are displeased if they are not liked.”
  • He should not withdraw himself from the masses or lock his doors before them, nor should he belittle them or assign mediators between him and the public; who allow some people to enter and prevent others. The Prophet ( s) said: “Whoever is given responsibility of some matter of the Muslims but withdraws himself while they are in dire need and poverty, Allah will withdraw Himself from him while he is in dire need and poverty on the Day of Requital.” (Dawood)
  • He should be merciful to his subjects and not burden them with unbearable tasks or restrict their way of living. The Prophet s said: “O Allah, whoever takes command of something of my nation and makes things hard for them, then make things hard for him, and whoever takes command of something of my Ummah (Nation)and is gentle with them, then be gentle with him.” (Muslim)

    ‘Umar ibn ul-Khattaab explained the greatness of this matter in his words: “By Allah, if a mule were to fall in Iraq, I would fear that Allah would ask me why I did not level the road for it.”

    The Muslim ruler must be as al-Hasan al-Basri, may Allah have mercy upon him, described in a letter which he sent to ‘Umar ibn Abdul-Azeez, in which he said:

    • “O Leader of the Faithful! Know that Allah has made the just ruler as one who straightens the crooked, one who restrains the oppressors, one who reforms the corrupt, one who strengthens and brings justice to the weak, and one who brings refuge to the afflicted.
    • O Leader of the Faithful! just ruler is like a kind shepherd who looks for the best pastures for his flock and steers them away from areas of danger and wild animals, and protects them from harms.
    • O Leader of the Faithful! just ruler is like a caring father who toils for the sake of his children, educates them as they grow up, and earns bread for them while he is still alive, and leaves for them (wealth) after his death.
    • O Leader of the Faithful! just ruler is like an affectionate mother who has loving care for her son. She bears him with hardship, and delivers him with hardship. She cares for him while he is a little child, staying awake at night when he does and sleeps when he does. She feeds him at times, and weans him at others, and she feels happy about his good health and worries when he complains.
    • O Leader of the Faithful! just ruler is the guardian of orphans and sponsor of the needy, he cares for the young and provides for the old.
    • O Leader of the Faithful! just ruler is like a heart within the ribs. When the heart is healthy the ribs become healthy, but when it is sick they grow unhealthy
    • O Leader of the Faithful! just ruler is the one who listens to the Words of Allah and makes them listen to it, he is the one who seeks the reward of Allah, and makes his subjects seek His reward. He is the one who submits to the will of Allah and makes his subject submit to Him. O Leader of the Faithful, do not misuse what Allah has bestowed upon you, like a slave who his master entrusted him with his wealth and family, and he squandered the wealth and made his children homeless.
    • O Leader of the Faithful, know that Allah has prescribed certain castigatory punishments to deter his slaves from doing evil…what if the one who is charged with this duty does a sin that necessitates this? Castigations would safeguard people’s lives… what if the one who is charged with this duty commits murder?
    • O Leader of the Faithful be mindful of death, and what will take place thereafter, and the little number of helpers; so gather whatever provisions you can in order to prepare for it and the horrors that follow it.
    • O Leader of the Faithful, know that you have a different home unlike your present home. In it your sleep will last long, and your friends will part with you, and leave you all by yourself. Therefore, take those provisions which may accompany you. (That Day shall a man flee from his brother. * And from his mother and his father, * And from his wife and his children.) [80:34-6]
    • O Leader of the Faithful, remember the words of Allah: (When the contents of the graves are brought out and poured forth. * And that which is in the breasts (of men) shall be made known…) [100:9-10]
      On that Day secrets will be revealed, as well as your record of deeds: (that leaves neither a small thing nor a big thing, but has recorded it.) [18:49]
    • O Leader of the Faithful, there is still time for you before death comes and all hopes are shattered and lost (to work righteousness).
    • O Leader of the Faithful! Judge between your subjects with the laws of Islam, and do not lead them in the way of the wrong-doers. Do not give the proud power over feeble, as they do not observe any pacts or honor towards a believer; and so that you should not bear the sins of others. Do not be deceived by those who enjoy things that lead to your misery, and devour the good things while depriving you of the good things of the Hereafter. Do not think of your power today; but think of it tomorrow when you become the captive of death, standing on the Day of Requital before Allah in the presence of an assembly of angels, prophets and messengers, when… ((All) faces shall be humbled before (Allah,) the Ever Living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists.) [20:111]
    • O Leader of the Faithful! Although I have not attained with this advice the level of wise men or their reason and wisdom before me, I have done my best to be sincere in my advice to you. So take my message as a medicine given by a loving person to his favorite friend… although it has bitter taste, it would serve as a cure.”

Rights Owed to Parents

  • Children must obey their parents as long as they do not command them with something sinful. Children must treat their parents well and must be kind to them, and strive to please them and provide for them. They must secure for them their necessities from food, drink, clothing and shelter. Children must speak to them softly and should not be harsh, and they must have patience in serving them and give consideration to their feelings. They should not speak ill to them, hurt their feelings, nor do anything which angers them. Allah says: (And your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him. And that you be dutiful to your parents. If one of them or both of them attain old age in your life, say not to them a word of disrespect, nor shout at them but address them in terms of honor.) [17:23]
  • Islam has regarded their disobedience to be one of the greatest sins. Abdullah ibn ‘Amr narrated that a Bedouin came to the Prophet ( s) and said: “O Messenger of Allah ( s) ,what are the gravest of sins?” He responded: “To worship or associate partners with Allah.” He said, “Then what?” He replied, “Disobedience to parents.” He said, “Then what?” He replied, “A submerging(1) (ghamoos) oath.” He said, “And what is a submerging oath?” He replied, “A lie which is sworn to usurp the money of another Muslim.” (al-Bukhari)
  • To portray the status of parents in Islam, the Prophet ( s) said: “The Pleasure of the Lord is attained through pleasing parents, and the Anger of the Lord is incurred through angering parents.” (at-Tirmidhi)
  • It is obligatory that these rights be given to parents, even if they are of a different Religion. Asmaa´ bint Abi Bakr said: “My mother came to me while she was a polytheist during the time of the Prophet ( s) so I sought permission of the Messenger of Allah ( s) .said, ‘My mother came to me and she desires [to maintain relations with me]. Should I maintain ties with my mother?’ ” He said to her: “Yes, maintain relations with your mother.” (al-Bukhari) Mothers are given priority over fathers in matters of kind treatment and good companionship. Abu Hurairah reported that a man said to the Prophet ( s): “O Messenger of Allah s) ,who has the most right for the best companionship?” He replied, “Your mother, then your mother, then your mother, then your father, and then those after him, and then those after him.” (Muslim)

  • The Prophet ( s) accorded the mother three rights and the father one right because the mother bears hardships and suffering that the father cannot. Mothers are as Allah described: (And We have enjoined on man to be dutiful and kind to his parents. His mother bears him with hardship and she brings him forth with hardship.) [46:15]
  • She suffers from hardship when she bears him in her womb, taking nutrition from her, during childbirth, and when she feeds him after delivery and stays awake at nights.

Rights Owed to the Husband

  • His role of leadership. He has the right to be the leader of the house. He is not, however, to be a petty tyrant. He has the right to implement what he sees as the best interest for the affairs of the family. Allah says: (Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allah has made one of them to excel the other, and because they spend (to support them) from their means.) [4:34]
    That is because men generally are more rational in dealing with affairs, in contrast to women who are more emotional. But the husbands should still consult their wives and accept their views in marital affairs.
  • The wife must obey her husband as long as he does not command her to do something sinful.
  • The wife must not refuse her husband when he calls her to bed. The Prophet ( s) said: “If a man calls his wife to his bed and she refuses, and he spends the night angry with her, the angels will continuously curse her till the morning.” (Muslim)
  • The wife should not burden him with requests he cannot bear. She should be keen to please him and fulfill his wishes. The Prophet ( s) said: “If I would have ordered a person to prostrate to another, I would have ordered a woman to prostrate to her husband.” (at-Tirmidhi)
  • A woman should protect and guard her husband’s wealth, children and honor. The Prophet ( s) said: “The best of women are those that when you look at her you are pleased, when you order her she obeys, and when you are not present, she keeps your secrets and protects your wealth.” (Nasaa`i)
  • A woman should not leave the house except if her husband agrees, and not to permit into his house anyone whom he dislikes. The Prophet ( s) ,said: “Indeed you have rights over your wives and they have rights over you. As for your rights over your wives, they should not permit those who you dislike to enter your houses. Indeed their right over you is to clothe and feed them in a good way.” (ibn Majaah)

    The Early Muslims used to implement such instructions. ‘Awf bint Muhlim ashShaybani gave this piece of advice to her daughter on her wedding night:
    “My daughter, you have parted your home in which you were born and your nest in which you were raised, to a man you do not know and a companion you have not been familiar with. So be his maid and he will be your slave. Observe for him ten qualities, and he will be a treasure for you: contentment, obedience, taking care of your beauty and pleasant smell, taking heed of the time of his sleep and meals, taking care of his money and children, refraining from disobedience to him, and keeping his secrets. Don’t show pleasure to him when he is worried or grief when he is pleased.”

A Husband’s Obligations towards his Wife

  • The dowry ( Dowry: In Islam, the dowry is brought by the husband to the bride): A woman has a right to dowry which should be stated during the marriage contract. It is an essential part of the marriage contract and cannot be conceded by the wife, even if the wife chooses to do so, until the contract has been concluded. Allah says: And give to the women (whom you marry) their dowry with a good heart. But if they, of their own good pleasure, remit any part of it to you, take it and enjoy it without fear of any harm.) [4:4]
  • Justice and Equality: If a man has more than one wife, he is required to treat them fairly and justly. He should treat them equally regarding food, drink, dress, residence and time allotted to each. The Prophet ( s) said: “If a man has two wives and favors one of them over the other in fair-treatment, he will come on the Day of Requital with one side tilted.” (Abu Dawood)
  • Providing for wife and children: A husband is required to provide an appropriate residence and living requirements; such as food, drink, clothing, as well as money to upkeep them, in an amount which is within his means. Allah says: (Let the rich man spend according to his means, and the man whose resources are restricted, let him spend according to what Allah has given him. Allah puts no burden on any person beyond what He has given him. Allah will grant after hardship, ease.) [65:7]

    In order to encourage Muslims to provide for their family, Islam has regarded this as a charity which a person will be rewarded for. The Prophet ( s) said to one of his companions named Sa’d bin Abi Waqqaas: “An indeed whatever you spend, it will be regarded as charity, even a morsel [of food] which you raise to place in your wife’s mouth.” (al-Bukhari)

    The wife has the right to take money from her husband without his knowledge if he does not appropriately provide for them. Hind bint ‘Utbah said to the Prophet ( s): “O Messenger of Allah ( s) indeed Abu Sufyan is miserly, and he does not give me what my child and I can suffice with, except what I take from him without his knowledge.” He said, “Take what suffices you and your child without excess.” (al-Bukhari)

  • Living compassionately and special relations: This is one of the most important things the Religion has commanded the husband to offer… for a wife is in need of a loving heart and a husband who trifles with her and fulfills her desires. This will also guarantee that his wife does not do blameworthy things. The Prophet ( s) said to Jaabir: “Have you gotten married O Jaabir?” I replied, “Yes.” He said, “A virgin or other than that?” I replied, “Other than that.” He said, “Why did you not marry a young virgin so as to sport with her, and make each other laugh?” (al-Bukhari)
  • Keeping her secrets. He should keep private (intimate) relationship secrets, and refrain from exposing her secrets, shortcomings and other things he notices or hears from her. The Prophet ( s) said: “The worst of people in the sight of Allah, on the Day of Requital, is the man who has relations with his wife and she has relations with him, and then he divulges her secrets.” (Muslim)
  • Treating her with kindness: A husband should treat his wife with kindness. He should consult her about mutual everyday matters, provide her with the means of happiness and show to her that he loves her by joking and playing with her. The Prophet ( s) said: “The best and most complete believers are the best of them in character and manners, and the best of you are the best of you towards their wives.” (at-Tirmidh)
  • The husband should be patient with her faults, and should not make a point of seeking them out. The Prophet ( s) said: “Let not a believing man despise a believing woman. Even if he may hate one aspect, he is pleased with another (or he said ‘others’)” (Muslim)
  • He should protect her with jealously and not take her to evil and corrupt places. Allah says: (O you who believe! Ward off yourselves and your families against a Fire (Hell) whose fuel is men and stones.) [66:6]
  • The husband must protect her wealth. He is not to take anything that belongs to her unless she gives him permission, and he is not to use her wealth except by her consent.

The Rights of Relatives

  • Islam has urged well to do people to help and take care of their relatives, financially – by fulfilling their requirements through obligatory or voluntary charity, and morally – by inquiring about their condition, treating them with kindness and sympathy and sharing their joys and sorrows. Allah says: (And fear Allah through Whom you demand (your mutual rights), and do not cut the relations of the wombs (kinship).) [4:1]
  • Islam urges Muslims to treat close relatives kindly even if they do not treat him kindly. It encourages that one pardon them even if they have wronged him, and be friendly to them even if they are unfriendly to him. The Prophet ( s) said: “It is not he who maintains ties with his relatives who does so if they do the same; but rather it is he who maintains ties with them even if they cut relation with him.” (al-Bukhari)
  • Islam has also warned against severing ties of kinship and considered it one of the greatest sins. The Messenger of Allah ( s) said: “Allah created the creation, and when he finished, the womb stood (as if asking for something). He said, “What do you say?” It said, “I am standing seeking refuge in you from severing ties of kinship.” He said, “Are you not pleased that I will maintain ties with those who maintain you (ties of the womb: kinship) and cut ties with those who cut you?” It replied, “Of course I am O Lord.” He said, “That is for you.” (Then Abu Hurairah said [reciting the verse]): ‘Would you then, if you were given the authority, do mischief in the land, and sever your ties of kinship.’ (al-Bukhari)

The Rights of Children

  • The rights owed to children is that they must be protected, their affairs must be taken care of, they must be given a proper upbringing, and their needs must be met, such as food, drink, dress, and accommodation. The Prophet ( s) said: “It is sinful enough for a person to be negligent of his family.” (Abu Dawood)
  • One should choose appropriate names for them. The Prophet ( s) said: “Indeed on the Day of Requital you will be called by your names and your father’s names, so keep good names.” (Abu Dawood)
  • They should be taught good manners, such as modesty, respect for elders, truthfulness, honesty, obedience to parents, and that they be kept away from foul language and evil deeds, such as telling lies, fraud and deceit, treachery, dishonesty, robbery, disobedience to parents, etc.
  • They should be educated in those things which help them in this life as well as the next. They should be given a proper upbringing, and introduced to righteous company. The Prophet ( s) said: “Everyone of you is a guardian, and responsible for what is in his custody. The ruler is a guardian of his subjects and responsible for them; a husband is a guardian of his family and is responsible for it; a woman is a guardian of her husband’s house and is responsible for it, and a servant is a guardian of his master’s property and is responsible for it.” (al-Bukhari)
  • One should be keen about their safety. This entails that the parents do not invoke Allah against their childrenhj. The Prophet ( s) said: “Do not supplicate against yourselves, do not supplicate against your children, and do not supplicate against your wealth. [It may be that your supplication] accords with a time in which Allah grants those who ask him, and your supplication be answered.” (Muslim)
  • Children must be treated equally; one should not prefer some over others in gifts and treatment. This is because unfair treatment will lead to their disobedience and will rouse hatred amongst them. Nu’man ibn Basheer narrated: “My father gave me some of his wealth as charity, and my mother, ‘Amrah bint Rawaahah, said ‘I will not agree until the Messenger of Allah ( s) bears witness to it.’ So my father left to the Prophet ( s) to bear witness to his giving of charity to me. The Messenger of Allah ( s) said, ‘Did you do the same to all your children?’ to which he replied, ‘No.’ He said, ‘Fear Allah and be just in regards to your children.’ Upon that, my father returned and took back the charity [he had given me].” (Muslim)

The Rights of Neighbors

  • Islam has enjoined that one be good to his neighbors in all respects. Allah says: (Worship Allah and join none with Him in worship, and do good to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, the poor, the neighbor who is near of kin, the neighbor who is a stranger, the companion by your side, the wayfarer (you meet), and those (slaves) whom your right hands possess. Verily, Allah does not like such as are proud and boastful.) [4:36]
    The Religion has prohibited that one harm his neighbor, verbally or physically. Abu Hurairah said: “Such and such woman fasts during the day and prays during the night, but she harms her neighbor by her speech.’ The Prophet ( s) said, ‘There is no good in her and she is in the Hellfire.’ It was said, ‘Such and such woman prays [only that] which is obligatory, and fasts [only] the [obligatory] month of Ramadan, and she gives some pieces of Iqit (dried yogurt) as charity, but she does not harm anyone with her tongue.’ He replied, ‘She is in Paradise’.” (Ahmad & al-Haakim)

    Islam has given the neighbor a great rank and right. The Prophet ( s) said: “Gabriel continued to command me in regards to neighbors until I thought that he would give them a share of inheritance.” (al-Bukhari)

    Islam regards harming one’s neighbor a negater of Imaan. The Prophet ( s) said: “By Allah he does not believe, by Allah he does not believe, by Allah he does not believe.” They said, “Who O Messenger of Allah ( s) “?He said, “He whose neighbor is not safe from his evil.” (al-Bukhari)

    The Prophet ( s) defined what is owed to the neighbor when he was asked what their rights were. He ( s) said: ‘The best companions with Allah are the best of them to his companions, and the best of neighbors are the best of them to his neighbor.’ (at-Tirmidthi)

    One must be patient with the harm their neighbor may cause and be kind and lenient with them. A man said to Ibn Mas’ood: “I have a neighbor who harms, curses and causes me uneasiness.” He replied, “… If he disobeys Allah in your regard, then obey Allah in his.” (Ghazali, in ‘Ihyaa ‘Uloom-ud-Deen’, v.2, p.212)

    There are three types of neighbors:

    • A Muslim relative. This neighbor has three rights: The rights of relatives, neighbors, and Muslims.
    • TA Muslim neighbor. This type has two rights: the rights of neighbors and the rights of Muslims.
    • A non-Muslim neighbor. This type has one right: the right of neighbors. The family of Abdullah ibn ‘Amr cooked a whole sheep for him, but when he arrived he said,

    Muhammad ( s) say: “Did you give some to our Jewish neighbor? Did you give some to our Jewish neighbor? I heard the Messenger of Allah ( s) say: “Jibreel (Gabriel) continued to command me in regards to neighbors until I thought that he would give them a share of inheritance.” (at-Tirmidhi)

The Rights of Friends and Companions

  • Islam has encouraged that one consider the needs of friends and has prescribed certain rights that should be fulfilled in their regard; such as helping them and giving them sincere advice. The Prophet ( s) said: “The best of companions in the Sight of Allah 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.” (at-Tirmidhi)
  • They should receive their rights even after their companion’s death. A man from the tribe of Bani Salamah asked the Messenger of Allah ( s): “Is there any way I can do good to my parents after they have died?” He s replied: “Yes. Pray the funeral prayer over them, seek forgiveness for them, and implement their pacts which they made. Join the ties of kinship which cannot be so except through them, and honor and be generous to their friends...” (Abu Dawood)

The Rights of Guests

  • In Islam, guests have the right to be shown generosity. The Prophet ( s) said: “Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day let him be generous to his neighbor. Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day let him be generous to his guest in what he gives.” A man said, “And what should he give O Messenger of Allah ( s) “He replied, “A day and a night, and one must honor his guest for three days. Whoever does more… then it is a charity for him. And whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day let him speak fair or stay quiet.” (al-Bukhari)
  • Islam regards honoring one’s guest as a righteous deed for which he will be rewarded. The Prophet ( s) said: “There is no person like a person who takes the reigns [of his horse] and fights for the sake of Allah, avoiding people’s evil, and a person among his sheep in the outskirts giving meal to his guest, honoring his right.” (Ahmad & al-Haakim)
  • Islam has also described the manner in which a person should treat his guest. He should greet him honorably with a cheerful face and part with him in a good way.
  • The guest, however, should also take the conditions of his host into consideration, not burdening him with what he cannot afford. The Prophet ( s) said: “It is unlawful for a Muslim to stay with his brother until he makes him fall into sin.” They say, “O Messenger of Allah ( s) , how can he (the guest) make him (the host) fall into sin?” He ( s) replied, “That he stays with him while he does not have [enough money] to serve him food.” (Muslim)
  • Imam Ghazali wrote in his book, “Ihyaa ‘Uloom-ud-Deen” (i.e.: Revival of Religious Sciences) about Prophet Muhammad ( s):

    “The Messenger of Allah would honor his guests. He would even spread his garment for a non-relative guest to sit. He used to offer his guest his own cushion and insist until they accept it . No one came to him as a guest but thought that he was the most generous of people. He gave each one of his companions sitting with him his due portion of his attention. He would direct his listening, speech, gaze and attention to those who were in his company. Even then, his gathering was characterized by modesty, humbleness and honesty. He would call his companions by their kunyah to honor them… He was the farthest from being angry and the easiest to be contented.”

Rights Related to Employment

  • In regards to work and employment, Islam introduced principles and guidelines which define the relationship between the employer and the employed.

The Rights of the Employed

  • Islam enjoins that the relationship between employer and employee should be based upon principles of brotherhood, equality and dignity. The Prophet ( s) said: “Your servants are your brothers whom Allah has placed under your authority. Whoever has his brother under his authority, let him feed him from what he eats and clothe him with what he wears. Let him not burden him with more than he can bear, and if you do, then help him.” (al-Bukhari)
  • Islam has guaranteed their right to receive wages. The Prophet ( s) narrated from Allah that He said: “I will stand against three types of people on the Day of Requital: a person who swears by Me and then betrays his oath, a person who sells a free person and eats the money he gains from it, and a person who hired a workman, takes his full due [of work] from him but does not give him his right (his wages).” (al-Bukhari)
  • It also orders that the wages be negotiated before work begins. In a Hadeeth collected by Ahmad, the Prophet ( s) forbade hiring a workman before negotiating his wages.
  • Islam also commands that wages be paid immediately after the task has been completed. The Prophet ( s) said: “Pay the workman his wages before his sweat dries.” (ibn Majaah)
  • They are not to be given more work than they can bear; if he is given more than he can bear, than he should be given extra wages or help. The Prophet ( s) said: “Let him also not burden him with more than he can bear, and if you do, then help him.” (al-Bukhari)
  • In order to raise the honor and dignity of labor, the Prophet ( s) said that it was the best and most pure of earnings, if done through permissible means. The Prophet ( s) said: “No person has eaten better food than that which [was bought from the wages which] his own hands toiled. Indeed David, the Prophet of Allah, ate from what his own hands earned.” (al-Bukhari)
  • To encourage manual labor, the Prophet ( s) said: “By Him in Whose Hands is my soul, if one of you goes and chops wood, ties it, and carries it on his back, it is better for him than to beg people, whether they give him money or not.” (al-Bukhari)

The Rights of the Employer

  • As Islam required the employer to give the employee his due rights; the employees should also observe the rights of the employer…they should carry out the work in the best manner, without delay or shortcomings.
    The Prophet ( s) said: “Indeed Allah likes that if one of you performs some work, that he does it perfectly.” (Abu Ya’laa)
  • In order to encourage people to do their assigned work properly and sincerely, Islam has made this type of wages from the best of earnings. The Prophet ( s) said: “The best of earnings are those earned by working sincerely and properly.” (Ahmad)

General Rights and Obligations

  • Islam obligates upon Muslims to regard the conditions of their Muslim brothers, wherever they may be. The Prophet ( s) said: “The believers in their love, mercy and their feeling for each other are like one body: if one part feels pains, all the other parts feel pain through fever and sleeplessness.” ( Muslim)
  • slam orders that Muslims strive to improve their condition. The Prophet ( s) said: “None of you believes until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself.” (al-Bukhari)
  • It orders that Muslims stand by their brothers at times of crises and agony. The Prophet ( s) said: “The believers are like a solid structure, each one (brick) strengthens the other (and then he clasped his hands and intertwined his fingers).” (al-Bukhari)
  • It orders that Muslims come to the aid of their brothers and assist them in times of war if they are in need. Allah says: (And if they seek your help in Religion, it is your duty to help them…) [8:72]
  • It forbids that they be forsaken in their time of need. The Prophet ( s) commanded that the Muslims support their oppressed brothers. (al-Bukhari)