And hold firmly to the rope of Allah all together and do not become divided…(3:103)

Allah’s Witness on Earth

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’’عَنْ اَنَسٍ ابْنِ مَالِکٍ ؓ یَقُوْلُ مَرُّوْ ا بِجَنَازَۃٍ فَاَثْنَوْا عَلَیْھَا خَیْراً فَقَالَ النَّبِیُّ ﷺ وَجَبَتْ ثُمَّ مَرُّ وْا بِأُخْرَیٰ فَاثْنَوْا عَلَیْھَا شَرًّا فَقَالَ النَّبِيﷺ وَجَبَتْ فَقَالَ عُمَرُ ابْنُ الْخَطَّابِ مَا وَجَبَتْ قَالَ ھٰذَا اَثْنَیْتُمْ عَلَیْہِ خَیْراً فَوَجَبَتْ لَہٗ الْجَنَّۃُ وَ ھٰذَا اَثْنَیْتُمْ عَلَیْہِ شَرًّ ا فَوَجَبَتْ لَہٗ النَّارُ اَنْتُمْ شُھَدائُ اﷲِ فِیْ الْاَرْضِ‘‘(بخاری کتاب الجنائز باب ثَنَائُ النَّاسِ عَلَی الْمَیِّتِ(

Narrated Anas bin Malikؓ: A funeral procession passed and the people praised the deceased. The Prophet said, “It has been affirmed to him.” Then another funeral procession passed and the people spoke badly of the deceased. The Prophet said, “It has been affirmed to him”. ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab ؓasked Allah’s Apostle ﷺ, “What has been affirmed?” He replied, “You praised this, so Paradise has been affirmed to him; and you spoke badly of this, so Hell has been affirmed to him. You people are Allah’s witnesses on earth.”


  • Both the good and bad characteristics of a deceased may be described. There is also no harm in doing so, particularly when a need calls off. However, an unnecessary mention of it is disliked very much before the relatives and beloved ones of the deceased, since; one should do his best to do so. It is for this reason that it has been recommended in the Prophetic Traditions to make a good mention of the deceased and avoid a bad one. Says the Holy Prophet ﷺ, “Describe the good characteristics of your deceased and avoid their bad ones.” (Abu Dawood)
  • Since, the opinions of those who accompany us, occupy a great importance. Hence, when they testify about someone being good, we must trust him while they testify about someone being bad we must consider about it. The reason is that anyone who keeps someone’s company for every moment, he is well-acquainted with his all deeds, character, behaviours, merits and demerits. Therefore, once when a man appreciated someone before him, he asked him two question to know whether he was right or wrong.

One of them is that either he had made any journey along with him? The second one is either he had any dealings with him? Since, a man can be better analyzed during journey, Hazrat Umar ؓ asked him the same question. By chance, if anyone proves well in these conditions, it does indicate that he is a good man and on the same ground of experience, a man’s opinion may be regarded as an authentic one.

Through this event, we also come to know that we must socialize ourselves with the society rather than being disconnected with it, since a man’s merits or demerits cannot well analysed unless and until he does not lead his life in social background neither can any of his good or bad characteristic be well distinguished.

  • In case anything is not clear enough to us, we must request for its correct explanation without any hesitation, as also practiced by Hazrat Umar (R.T.A.) that he immediately asked for its explanation when he received the same reaction in tow different situations. The reason to do so is that the main objective of any conversation is to understand the main point one is talking about. Only if one is not able to conceive it, it implies that the whole conversation was in vain.

Hence, possible attempts should be made to understand the main point and there should be allowed no hesitation or anyone’s respect be a hurdle in it. People, in general, and students, in particular, are so hesitated in requesting for an explanation of anything, as a result, many an information and points remain unexplained and incomplete. On the contrary, if one demands it explanation, he might receive its satisfactory information. Hence, it is proverbial “اَلسُّؤَالُ نِصْفُ الْعِلْمِ” meaning, questioning is half of knowledge.

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