Fulfil Rights of the People and Safeguard Yourself From Their Evil!

In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy

Allaah [The Most High] said:

خُذِ ٱلۡعَفۡوَ وَأۡمُرۡ بِٱلۡعُرۡفِ وَأَعۡرِضۡ عَنِ ٱلۡجَـٰهِلِينَ

Show forgiveness, enjoin what is good, and turn away from the foolish. [7:199]

Imaam Ibnul Qayyim [rahimahullaah] said: There is no doubt that the one who is obeyed by the people [finds himself in] three situations:

Firstly, he commands them [with good] forbids them [from evil] for their own welfare. Secondly, he obligates on them that which they must do in order to obey him [in good]. Thirdly, the people with him are divided into two categories: The loyal ones- those who agree with him; and the obstinate ones- those who oppose him. Both groups have rights he must fulfil. His duty with regards to commanding them with [good] and restraining them [from evil] is that he commands them in order to bring about rectification for them in their personal affairs and forbids them from what is in opposition that.

His Obligations towards the Obedient Ones: He enjoins on them that which is easy [i.e. within the boundaries of halaal and haraam]. He should be generous to those who are submissive and do not hesitate to obey him [in good]. He should not burden them with hardship and difficulties, and thus corrupts their affair.

His Obligations towards the Foolish Ones: His obligation towards the foolish ones – those who act foolishness towards him- is that he turns away from them, neither responding to them in like manner nor taking revenge against them for himself. Indeed, Allaah [The Most High] said to His Prophet [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam]: [خُذِ ٱلۡعَفۡوَ وَأۡمُرۡ بِٱلۡعُرۡفِ وَأَعۡرِضۡ عَنِ ٱلۡجَـٰهِلِينَ – Show forgiveness, enjoin what is good, and turn away from the foolish]

And what is intended [in this ayah] is not that [you] turn away from the one who has no knowledge and refrain from teaching and guiding him, rather what is intended is that [you] turns away from the foolishness of the one who behaves foolishly and not to respond to him in like manner. This Ayah contains the affair of excellent social relations with the people – fulfilling their rights and safeguarding oneself from their evil. And had all the people adhered to this ayah, it would have sufficed them and brought them close to one another, for indeed being forgiving [in reality] is to overlook the [bad] manners of the people and being tolerant towards their characters.


[Source: For further details, see Badaa’i At-Tafseer Al-Jaami Limaa Fassarahu Al-Imaam Ibnu Qayyim Al-Jawzee: Vol: 1: page: 434-436. abridged & slightly paraphrased]

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The Quran and Sunnah Upon The Understanding of The Salaf

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