Maulana Sheikh NazimFRIENDSHIP

Friendship and loyalty and honesty are good characteristics which we have been ordered to teach our children through every religion. You will not find any religion that does not order friendship, loyalty and honesty and when people leave behind their beliefs, they leave behind friendship, loyalty and honesty. Therefore, these three good characteristics make a person of good quality. A good quality person will be friendly, loyal and honest with everyone. If someone does not have these characteristics, he is of bad quality; he cannot be trusted. If people cannot be trusted, what future is there for humanity?

Nothing can give youngsters these good characteristics except beliefs, real beliefs and real practice of those beliefs. We have been ordered, from the first Prophet Adam to the last Prophet Muhammad, p.b.u.h. and upon them, to keep friendship, to be loyal, to be honest. Each of these three things is a responsibility. Man is responsible for keeping friendship because we were not created to live alone, we were created to be together and so we must keep friendship with eachother. If a person lives with people but is an egoist, that person will never be friends with anyone; he is asking to be alone, never being loyal to anyone. We need to be friends because if good people are friends then we may prevent devils from coming between ourselves. Without friendship and loyalty then bad people, by this I mean to say devils, will be able to destroy every goodness on Earth. If a person is an egoist, he never likes to have friends around him, he prefers to be alone. Then, devils may find a way to come between good people and to put enmity among then. Therefore, every religion orders believers to look after each other. If an army needs to cross through a river, they join hands so that no individual is swept away by strong currents. Believers should do the same so that they may be stronger. It is a heavenly order to mankind to keep friendship, be loyal and be honest.

Also, we have been ordered to forgive - this is another good characteristic. A person should be able to forgive. This gives people honour and kills enmity and hatred. Throughout all time, whole religions have advised people to forgive, particularly when we are in a position to be able to take revenge. When we are in a position to be able to take revenge, we should say, "Go, I forgive you". To take revenge causes the growth of enmity and hatred and envy and many bad things come from the taking of revenge. Therefore, revenge destroys communities, personal relationships, even nations.

You cannot say that there are no devils in English people and you cannot say that there are no devils in Turkish people, or Arabic people. Devils are eveywhere in every nation. If not, why are innocent people killed? Therefore, one of the first things religion does is fight devils. If communities do not remove devils from their presence, they will never find peace and happiness, satisfaction or pleasure. They will never be pleased with their lives. Therefore, every community must try not to give devils any opportunity to come between them. This is a most important point for mankind these days but, if we look at any community, it is full of devils. They are throwing away good people. Good people are not able to remove these devils. Government's cannot remove them and they blame organised crime and the Mafia. Mafia, what does it mean? The Headquarters of devils. That is the meaning. The dictionary does not give such a meaning but this is the meaning. Governments are afraid of them. Therefore they cannot march on them and revenge will bring another war, a great war. Revenge is prohibited through religions. I don't think that Christianity gives permission for revenge. Jesus Christ said that if you are slapped on the face, you must "turn the other cheek". That means to say, "don't take revenge. Forgive". And, in Islam, revenge is prohibited also, particularly in our Sufi ways, totally prohibited. If a person wishes to take revenge he is thrown away from Tariqat. Therefore, it is a strong pillar in every religion to train their followers not to take revenge but to excuse people and to forgive.

Muslims must do every best action in their dealings with family, children, neighbours, the community, the whole universe. A Muslim must do his best for everyone who is in relationship with him or her. First in the family - the man must be best one for his family and women must be best for her husband and family; the man towards his wife and children must be the best one, so that none of the family members will say that another man's actions are better then our father's behaviour to us or my husband's dealings are not the best, but others are better. There must be best actions with family members and never hurting neighbours. There must be respect in the family. One must be more respected in the family - Islam accepts the man to be the most respected, because he has the biggest responsibility to carry for the family. Woman is weak and in need of protection. So, if a person carries more responsibility, he must be obeyed and respected in the family. From the man's side, Islam asks more mercy for his lady and his children to bear more and to be more patient and to be more merciful for them, not to eat himself without them eating, not getting home before his wife and children are at home, looking after everything they need, not to spend even one penny for himself, for his pleasure alone. If he wants something for himself, first he must ask for his family and children. He must behave as if he is a king at home in his family and he must deal with his wife as a queen for himself. He must say my lady and his wife must not say to him Peter, Umar, John. It is not good manners in Islam to say - both sides must keep respect to each other. You may use a respectful word for your husband, never saying by name. We never heard in previous times, our mothers, Muslim women, calling her husband by name or Muslim fathers calling wife by he name. He must never spent even one penny outside for his pleasure without making sure for his family. If he does not make sure he is a bad one, bad husband, bad father, in Islam. In Islam man must be the best man, women must be the best women.

Neighbours must be protected. We have a saying, if you want to know about a person, you must ask his neighbour. If the neighbours say he is good, you must accept him as a good man. Our neighbours are our juries. If they say he is a good one, that it is a good one. If he hurts his neighbour, making them complain, harming them, he is a bad one. Islam prohibits harming neighbours and orders people to look after their neighbours first from everyone, because they are the background for our homes, for our families. When we are absent, they must look after our homes. In this way there must be a very close, strong relationship and solidarity with neighbours. Islam says neighbours are forty houses - in all directions up to forty houses, this is your neighbourhood. You must look after all these people, you must be in relationship, you must say good-bye, good morning, good evening to them, you must visit them, you must ask how are you, what are you doing, what do you need? And you must take care that in these forty houses in four directions no bad person comes to live there. You must say no to a bad person coming to live in your neighbourhood. That community must be united. If a bad person, bad family comes to the neighbourhood, that means a cancer cell is coming to the community. Therefore, Islam orders every Muslim to look after his neighbour up to forty houses around his home. All of them must be visited for good occasions, for sad occasions, for any occasion, for sickness, for death, for family weddings and other occasions and religious days and nights. They must visit each other and look after their needs and what they are going, who is coming and who is going.

A Muslim community with their good dealings is keeping its area free from bad ones, Muslim help security powers - each one must be a holder of security power and give support to them so that any bad thing which happens there, they will know and who did it. They must be with the security powers, the policy. That is the best community organisation in Islam, never giving a chance to a bad one to infiltrate the area, quickly catching him. Now in Western civilisation they claim that they reached top point of civilisations, but people do not know who is in front on their home, who is that one, and not saying good morning or good evening. What is that civilisation? Islam brought best community organisation and best for community. This is a sign of our relationship with each other at home and in the neighbourhood and also our relationship with governing powers, with the government.

Islam says, don't allow bad people among yourselves, isolate them. Bad ones must be isolated from the community. That is a most important thing in Islam. Never give a chance for a bad one to live in the community. The government has the most responsibility to look after those people. But Muslims also must not allow such bad ones to live in their neighbourhood.

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