“There is no person like a person who takes the reigns and fights for the sake of Allah, avoiding people’s evil, and a person among his sheep in the outskirts giving meal to his guest, honouring his right.” [Ahmad & al-Haakim]
Islam has also described the manner in which a person should treat his guest. He should greet him honourably with a cheerful face and part with him in a good way.
The guest has rights, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said. There should be no doubt about this matter. If guests come without being invited, they should be honoured, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said.
Imam Ghazali radi allahu anhu wrote in his book, “Ihyaa ‘Uloom-ud-Deen” (i.e.: Revival of Religious Sciences) about Prophet Muhammad (SalAllahu Alaihwasallam):
“The Messenger of Allah would honor his guests. He would even spread his garment for a non-relative guest to sit. He used to offer his guest his own cushion and insist until they accept it . No one came to him as a guest but thought that he was the most generous of people. He gave each one of his companions sitting with him his due portion of his attention. He would direct his listening, speech, gaze and attention to those who were in his company. Even then, his gathering was characterized by modesty, humbleness and honesty. He would call his companions by their kunyah to honor them… He was the farthest from being angry and the easiest to be contented.”
Allah Almighty states in Holy Quraan:
Worship Allah and join none with Him in worship, and do good to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, the poor, the neighbor who is near of kin, the neighbour who is a stranger, the companion by your side, the wayfarer (you meet), and those (slaves) whom your right hands possess. Verily, Allah does not like such as are proud and boastful. [S:4 V:36]
From the above verse we learn to be good to our neighbours, relatives and show kindness and good attitude to our guest.
Our great Prophet (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wasallam) teaches us to be generous and how to entertain guests. He wants a Muslim to show gratitude. Nabi (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wasallam) further guides us by saying:
“Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should be hospitable with his or her guests.”
Our great Prophet (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wasallam) teaches us to be generous and how to entertain guests. He wants a Muslim to show gratitude and be kind and happy when receiving guests. One should respect and welcome his guests, in particular when they are strangers, or have no family or friends in that country.
It may even happen that a guest comes while relatives or friends are being entertained, or other travellers are staying and there is lack of space; or you are unprepared and have few provisions or are even short of money. In any eventuality, guests who come to your home should be made welcome, shown respect and be provided with whatever food and drink are available. One should sit with them in order to make them feel comfortable and happy, and take care to pay great attention to them.
Surely, our glorious Prophet (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wasallam) guides us towards respecting guests and being generous towards them. In this respect, he says: “Indeed whoever believes that Allah is All-Generous, Who provides for His creation and rewards those who are hospitable towards their guests, should look after his guest.”
Surely, Allah will increase our provision if we welcome our guests and give them food and drink, and will reward us on the Resurrection Day.
Allah is All-Generous, who loves the generous ones and dislikes those who are mean.
Bibliography: Shaikh Abbas Qummi, Safinat al-Bihar, Bab Dhaif, Sunan ibn Maja, vol. 2, Haq al Jiwar (The rights of neighbours), Ikram al-Dhaif (Respecting the Guest).
- Penalty for Insulting the Beloved Prophet SallAllaho Alaihi wa Sallam (madinasharif.wordpress.com)
- Seeking blessings from the graves of the pious (madinasharif.wordpress.com)
- Story of a pious woman at the time of Pharaoh (madinasharif.wordpress.com)