A society is cumulative product of neighborhood and companionship. Islam being religion of peace recommends careful behavior towards one’s neighbors and peers. Arab culture was comprised of moral norms regarding neighborhood and it was a common saying that one’s neighbors are before one’s own self. Unfortunately modern Arab world has forgotten the basics of ethics which were once prevalent here. The modern culture and hustle bustle of cities have urged people to live comfortably in a separate life. In old good times, people were more concerned about their neighbors as compare to their own families especially in hours of need but now things have totally changed in modern scenario.
Now a days people are more connected to their loved ones who are even out of country through internet and skype whereas they have a little or no connection with their neighbors next door. It is a bitter reality of our society which has promoted the culture of selfishness and mean attitude. Islam has strongly emphasized over importance of neighborhood. There are several sayings of Quran and Apostle of Allah which direct Muslims to show concern and care for other people living in their surroundings. Religion has never segregated between Muslims and non-Muslims. All neighbors are ordered to be treated fairly without any prejudice.
Allah has stated in Holy Quran that “Serve Allah, and join not any partners with Him; and do good to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, those in need, neighbors who are near, neighbors who are strangers, the companion by your side, the wayfarer (you meet), and what your right hands possess: For Allah does not love the arrogant, the vainglorious.” (4:36)
Apostle of Allah Holy Prophet (PBUH) narrated the importance of neighborhood in these words, “Jibreel kept on recommending me to treat neighbors kindly and politely until that I thought Allah would order me to make them my heirs.” These sayings of Holy prophet (PBUH) and Quran depict clearly the concern of Islam regarding neighbors without any discrimination of religion, race, and caste or creed. Those who don’t chase their neighbors during times of need are considered arrogant by Allah and his messenger. Hence Allah does not like proud people.
The charter of human rights engraved in USA recommends a clause for importance of neighbors and peers in society. Whereas the first charter of human rights was presented by Holy Prophet PBUH 1400 years ago during his holy pilgrimage to Mecca. The inclusion of rights neighbors in first human charter depicts importance of neighborhood for a society. A community can never be peaceful unless people living inside are concerned and caring for each other. The modern technology is considered as the biggest reason for negligence of rights of fellow human beings.
Masjids are important platforms for bringing people together in a society. They give an opportunity for people to recognize each other which promote healthy relations. A society should also have parks and play grounds as common gathering places for people to meet and know each other.
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