Peace, patience, and tolerance: The guide to a good Muslim

It’s not a secret that in the current context we live in, Islam has a bad rep, and so do many Muslims. Islam in today’s context is often associated with violence, oppression, intolerance, and general backward characteristics. If you were to ask some people who never studied Islam properly what they thought Islam taught it’s followers, then it would also go along the lines of what we have just mentioned. They would probably think or believe that Islam teaches it’s followers to be all those things, to be violence and oppressive towards non-Muslims, and to show a lack of tolerance.

The truth however is much different, when studying Islam one finds that the good Muslim per Islamic teachings, is a Muslim possessing traits of being peaceful, patient, tolerant, and loving. All these aspects combined make good character, which also a central tenant to being a good Muslim, the good Muslim is the one with good character, and good character encompasses all goodness, and obviously the opposite of good character is bad character, which encompasses all the negative and bad, such as being intolerant, oppressive, and violent.

Now when Muslims say things like this, Islamophobes who have to make a living from demonising both Islam and Muslims will say “oh you’re just being a moderate Muslim” or “you’re just making these things up to conform with modern society and to present this lovy dovy image of Islam”. They will argue that this in fact is not the true Islam. Sadly for them, everything we have mentioned come straight from Islamic teachings, from the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) himself to be more specific.

Having patience and tolerance for example are seen as among the best traits-characteristics-deeds of a Muslim according to the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh):

Ubaida ibn As-Samit reported: A man came to the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, and he said, “O Prophet of Allah, which deed is best?” The Prophet said, “Faith and belief in Allah and striving in his cause.” The man said, “O Messenger of Allah, I want something easier than that.” The Prophet said, “Behave with tolerance and patience.” The man said, “O Messenger of Allah, I want something easier than that.” The Prophet said, “Do not protest Allah the Exalted in what He has decreed for you.”

Source: Musnad Ahmad 22210

Jabir ibn Abdullah reported: It was said, “O Messenger of Allah, which deed is best?” The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Patience and tolerance.” It was said, “Who among the believers has the best faith?” The Prophet said, “Those with the best character.”

Source: Musannaf ibn Abi Shayba 29806

According to these authentic sayings of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), being tolerant, and patient with others are seen as the best deeds-actions from a Muslim. The Prophet is being directly asked the question of what the best deed is, and the Prophet is giving this direct answer. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) didn’t reply to the question by saying the best Muslim or the best deed is “to go kill the infidel”, “to go be oppressive and intolerant”, “to go force everyone to convert to Islam by the sword”. These were not the responses given by the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), as mush as Islamophobes who love us to believe. The prophet says quite the opposite, be tolerant, patient, and have the best character which encompasses all these things.

Spreading peace is also another trait of what makes a very good Muslim according to the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh):

Abu Huraira reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “You will not enter Paradise until you believe and you will not believe until you love each other. Shall I show you something that, if you did, you would love each other? Spread peace between yourselves.

Source: Sahih Muslim 54

Here the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) links faith to loving each other, and the way this love is achieved is by spreading peace amongst each other. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) did not link faith to hate, and going on to spread chaos, anarchy, and terrorism. Islamophobes would obviously have us believe that, but again the reality is quite different.

Notice we are not bringing these teachings from our own whims and desires, to put a spin on things on Islam, but rather we are directly quoting the actual sayings and teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

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4 replies »

  1. that is vague patience and tolerance can mean anything it can just mean to wait for people convert to Islam or be tolerant by not killing all the wild stock or those not in combat you cant honestly Islam is a religion of peace, justice and equality but you maybe can say it is about unity, giving some rights to slaves and women

    • The onus is on you to prove patience-tolerance can mean anything and all the things you mentioned. There is nothing vague at all, it says be patient, tolerant, and peaceful, simple concepts to understand. If I tell someone be a patient person, a peaceful and tolerant person, they understand what it means. It’s up to you to prove the ‘vague’ issues that it means ‘wait for people to convert’ or whatever else.

    • Islam is a peaceful religion because it forbids mischief on earth.Islam is a peaceful religion that allows followers of other religions to live in the Islamic state and practice their religion without putting any pressure on them. They are the ones who are known as ahl adh-dhimmah or ahl al-‘ahd (those living under Muslim rule and enjoying the protection of the Muslim state). They are granted complete rights that are not granted to them by the most democratic countries nowadays.

      “….And do good as Allah has done good to you. And desire not corruption in the land. Indeed, Allah does not like corrupters.” [Qur’an 28:77]

      “Allah does not forbid you to deal justly and kindly with those who fought not against you on account of religion and did not drive you out of your homes. Verily, Allah loves those who deal with equity.

      It is only as regards those who fought against you on account of religion, and have driven you out of your homes, and helped to drive you out, that Allah forbids you to befriend them. And whosoever will befriend them, then such are the Zalimoon (wrong-doers those who disobey Allah)”

      [al-Mumtahinah 60:8-9].

      But if you want to judge Islam on the basis of the actions of some of its followers and adherents, then you must let us judge Christianity and Judaism based on the actions of some of the followers of these two religions too. How can it be said that Christianity is a religion of love when we see that the holy war (crusade) that was declared by the US president Bush (the son) is killing hundreds and thousands of people in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq?

      Even if we accept that al-Qaeda has attacked peaceful citizens in the USA, and we overlook the reports and studies that suggest otherwise and point to the involvement of intelligence agencies, can that aggression be warded off by occupying other countries? If Afghanistan was occupied in order to strike at al-Qaeda in that country, then why was Iraq occupied, which led to the killing of thousands and widespread abuse of prisoners [Abu Ghraib], and put an end to the peace and security that existed before the occupation, so that rivers of blood could continue to flow because of the consequences of occupation?

      How can it be said that Christianity is a religion of love, when we see complete support for the Zionist occupation of Muslim lands, the expulsion of millions from their homes, the imprisoning of hundreds of thousands, and the wholesale replacement of one people by another?

      Didn’t the Jews live in peace in Palestine and other Arab lands before the establishment of the state of Israel? So why this occupation? And why do Western countries continue to support this usurper state? Why does the Christian West support this state, and why was it given the Balfour declaration by Great Britain in order to kill Muslims and stir up the grave turmoil, trouble and war that resulted from the planting of the Zionist entity in the region?

      What do you want us to tell you about the current situation that is filled with terrorism of Christian states and the blood they have on their hands, represented by the new conservatives in the USA, Britain and elsewhere?

      Or do you want us to tell you about the armed Christian terrorist groups, of which there are more than forty-one, and more than twenty-two militias in the USA alone? If we were to list for you the operations that these groups have carried out throughout the world, it would take far too long. How about if we listed all the terrorist groups throughout the world, which are motivated by racist or religious beliefs, all of which have emerged from the Christian world?

      But let us set all of that aside. Why should we delve so deeply into the Western world? Have you not heard about the Muslims in Central Africa, and the massacres and atrocities to which they are being subjected?

      Have you heard about the offenses being committed against the Muslims in Myanmar, before the eyes of the entire world?

      Do you want us to tell you about the past? The pages of history are filled with the Crusades in which the Muslim lands were occupied and their blood was shed for hundreds of years?

      Do you want us to tell you about what happened to the Muslims in Andalus (Spain) and the atrocities carried out against them by the Inquisition?

      Do you want to us to tell you about the atrocities committed by European colonialists – French, British, Italian, Portuguese and Dutch – in Muslim lands?

      We believe that we can find a great deal of common ground if we agree to respect treaties and covenants, and restore people’s rights in Palestine, Afghanistan and Iraq, and other countries that have long suffered oppression and occupation, and the plunder of resources, sometimes in the name of freedom and sometimes in the name of fighting terrorism. At that point we will be able to find a way to debate calmly and wisely, for we are the people of this call, as Allah, may He be glorified and exalted, says (interpretation of the meaning):

      “Invite (mankind, O Muhammad SAW) to the Way of your Lord (i.e. Islam) with wisdom (i.e. with the Divine Inspiration and the Quran) and fair preaching, and argue with them in a way that is better. Truly, your Lord knows best who has gone astray from His Path, and He is the Best Aware of those who are guided.

      And if you punish (your enemy, O you believers in the Oneness of Allah), then punish them with the like of that with which you were afflicted. But if you endure patiently, verily, it is better for As-Sabirin (the patient ones, etc.)

      And endure you patiently (O Muhammad SAW), your patience is not but from Allah. And grieve not over them (polytheists and pagans, etc.), and be not distressed because of what they plot.

      Truly, Allah is with those who fear Him (keep their duty unto Him), and those who are Muhsinoon (good-doers)”

      [an-Nahl 16:125-128].

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