Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Forgiving One Another!

The Muslim woman who is truly guided by Islam is tolerant towards her friends and Sisters, and does not bear grudges against them. If she becomes angry with one of her Sisters, she restrains her anger and freely forgives the one who has committed an error, without seeing any shame in doing so. In fact, she sees this as a good deed which will bring her closer to Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala:
''(those) who restrain anger and pardon (all) men - for Allah loves those who do good.'' (Quraan Shareef 3:134)

If a person suppresses his or her seething anger, and does not forgive, that anger will turn into resentment and malice, which are more dangerous than anger. When a person forgives and forgets, the flames of anger are extinguished, and his or her soul is cleansed of the effects of anger and hatred. This is the level of Ihsan which earns Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala love for those who attain it:

''For Allah loves those who do good.'' (Quraan Shareef 3:134)

The Muslim woman who truly adheres to the teachings of Islam is one of this group of Muhsineen. She does not allow anger to continue boiling in her heart, because suppressed resentment is a very heavy burden on the soul; rather, she hastens to forgive and forget, thus freeing herself from this burden, and filling her soul with tranquillity and peace of mind.

Something that may help the Muslim woman to reach this difficult level of Ihsan is the knowledge that forgiving one's Sister is not a source of humiliation or shame, rather it will raise her in status and honour in the sight of Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala, as the Prophet Salla Allahu ta'ala 'alayhi wa Sallam described: "Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala will not increase His servant when He forgives except in honour. No one humbles himself for the sake of Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala but Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala will raise his status." (Muslim Shareef)

If we compare this honour and status with the status of Ihsan reached by the woman who is tolerant and forgiving, we will realize what an honour she has attained, for in the sight of Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala she is one of the Muhsinaat, and in the sight of people she is a respected, beloved example. The Muslim woman who has truly understood the teachings of Islam cannot have any trace of hatred or resentment in her heart towards anybody, because she understands precisely the value of forgiveness and purity of heart, and their importance if she seeks Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala forgiveness and pleasure, as the Prophet Salla Allahu ta'ala 'alayhi wa Sallam explained: "There are three sins, whoever dies free of these sins will be forgiven for anything else, if Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala wills: associating anything with Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala; practising magic or witchcraft; and bearing resentment towards his brother." (Bukhari Shareef)


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